"To preserve the reputation of the Fraternity unsullied must be your constant care."


Thursday, June 13, 2024

RIP: Bill Hosler

by Christopher Hodapp

UPDATE Monday, June 13th, 10:30AM: This story has been updated with Bill's official obituary, and funeral and memorial services’ information for both Arkansas and Indiana.

The world suddenly became a sadder and far less pleasurable place to inhabit this weekend. Word came that my friend and Masonic Brother William C. Hosler, PM, passed to the Celestial Lodge on Thursday, June 6th. He was 58.

If you're a Masonic podcast fan, you may be familiar with Bill from the 'Meet, Act and Part' program, with co-hosts Greg Knott, Darin Lahners, and occasionally, 'The Midnight Freemasons' author Todd Creason. 

Bill Hosler entered the fraternity three years after I did. Back in the early 2000s, he joined Fort Wayne's 
Three Rivers Lodge 733, and almost immediately became a regular contributor to early Internet Masonic message boards like Jeff Naylor's Indiana-based MasoniclLight.net (which started in November 1999). 

Bill and I became buddies right from the start, sharing our love for 1960s British comedy. He had lived for a time in England, and I seemed to be the only one who caught on to his references to the hilarious old 'Carry On' movies.

MasonicLight.net came into being in the nascent days of the movement to create observant-style lodges in the U.S. (which went by various names over the years, like European Concept, Traditional Observance, Best Practices, and others I've lost track of). A core clot of us on the website began tossing around ideas which quickly led to the establishment of Indiana's Lodge Vitruvian 767, with our fearless leader Jeff Naylor as its founding Worshipful Master. And a lot of those ideas made their way into Laudable Pursuit, which we published on online anonymously under our group's nom de l'internet, The Knights of the North.

Bill Hosler was one of those intrepid knights of the keyboard.

At that time, Bill was a truck driver based in Fort Wayne, in northeastern Indiana. In the coming years, he served as Worshipful Master at Three Rivers Lodge, and became a plural member in Calvin Prather Lodge 717 in Indianapolis. 
Bill was a member of the Fort Wayne Valley of the Ancient Accepted Scottish Rite (NMJ); he served as the High Priest of Fort Wayne's Royal Arch Chapter 19; and he was Commander of Fort Wayne Commandery No. 4 of the Knights Templar. He was also member of Mizpah Shrine in Fort Wayne, where he served as the webmaster and editor of their magazine. In 2007, he became a member of the Grand Lodge of Indiana's Technology Committee.

Bill relocated to Texas for a while, and he attended lodge whenever and wherever he could. He joined Lebanon Lodge 837 in Frisco, Texas, Roff Lodge 169 in Roff, Oklahoma, and Ardmore Lodge 31, where he became a life member. He and his wonderful lady, Tammi Harmoning, most recently settled in Three Rivers, Arkansas.

Meanwhile, he continued to write about the fraternity, contributing regularly to Todd Creason's 'The Midnight Freemasons' blog. Over time, he contributed a series of thoughtful short stories that featured dialogues between a young Mason named Pudge, and the Wise Old 50-year Mason, in a vein similar to Carl Claudy's famed Old Tyler Talks and The Old Past Master tales.

The 'Meet, Act and Part' podcast hit the air in 2020, and Bill was a regular presence there, too. But it was really Facebook where Bill's natural tendency to find a hilarious punchline in all things really came alive. I could always count on him to make me laugh at thoroughly inappropriate moments.

Services for Bill have not yet been announced, but this post will be updated as soon as I find the details (see below). My deepest condolences and sympathies go out to Tammi. Please keep her and the rest of their families in your thoughts and devotions.

I'm sorely going to miss you, my friend.

His column is broken, and his Brethren mourn. 

Requiescat in pace.

UPDATED June 13, 2024, 10:30AM:

Bill's obituary in the Arkansas Democrat Gazette:

William "Bill" Hosler, PM, age 58, of Cave Springs passed away on June 6, 2024, in his home. He was born February 1, 1966, in Fort Wayne, Ind., to William Carl Hosler and Margaret Ann Coil Hosler. Bill was the eldest of three children and was raised in Huntertown, Ind. Bill was preceded in death by his parents; and his beloved dog, Happy, who was the age of 13. Survivors include his soulmate, Tammi Harmoning of Cave Springs, Ark.; and his two siblings, Holly Hosler of Ohio, and Bob Hosler of Missouri. 

Local services for Bill will be Thursday, June 13, 2024, 1 p.m., at Hunt Chapel of Pinnacle Memorial Gardens in Rogers, Ark. Visitation will be held at Epting Funeral Home, Bentonville, Wednesday, June 12th, from 4-6 p.m. Bill will be laid to rest at Lindenwood Cemetery, Fort Wayne, Ind. Fort Wayne, Ind., services will be held at Lindenwood Cemetery on Saturday, June 15, 2024 at 2 p.m., with entombment to follow. 

Bill had several careers through his life, including a decade driving a truck. While it was not without stress, he found joy being on the road because he was able to visit all 48 United States and two provinces of Canada. He also worked as a Security and Emergency services officer at a General Motors, where he met so many long-lasting friends. For several years, Bill was the building manager for the Fort Wayne, Ind., Masonic Temple, and shared so many stories of his time there. Many of the inspirations for his fictional published writings came from his time as caretaker to the old Masonic edifice in Fort Wayne. 

Since his earliest days, he had a vivid imagination and a flair for writing. His writings have been published in the Working Tools magazine and he was a Regular Contributor for The Midnight Freemasons. He was also so happy when he was able to accomplish being a published author of Meditations of a Flawed Ashlar. He also found joy and laughter being a Co-Host of the Meet, Act and Part podcast with wonderful brothers he cared deeply for. He spent the last 14 years with his lady, Tammi, and their yellow Labrador named Happy, living across Oklahoma, Texas, and Arkansas. They enjoyed traveling with their precious dog to many parts of the lower 48. Within the last few years, they found joy in seeing the world, cruising the Caribbean and Atlantic Islands and had already begun planning several trips in the near future. 

WB Hosler was made a Master Mason in 2002, in Three Rivers Lodge No. 733 in Indiana. He served as Worshipful Master in 2007, and in 2006, became a member of the internet committee for Indiana's Grand Lodge. Bill was a member of Calvin Prather Lodge No. 717 in Indianapolis. He also held Masonic memberships outside his mother jurisdiction, amongst which was a perpetual membership of Ardmore No. 31 in Ardmore, Okla., and a lifetime member of Lebanon Lodge No. 837 in Frisco, Texas. Bill was a member of the Valley of Guthrie Ancient Accepted Scottish Rite in Oklahoma and the Valley of Indianapolis, Ind. He had also served as the High Priest Fort Wayne Chapter of the York Rite No. 19, and was Commander of Fort Wayne Commandery No. 4 of the Knight Templar. Bill is a founding member of the Masonic Society, he also held membership in the Dwight L Smith Lodge of Research in Indiana, Oklahoma Lodge of Research, Texas Lodge of Research, and The Missouri Lodge of Research and the Scottish Rite Valley of Fayetteville, Ark. 

Arrangements: Epting Funeral Home of Bentonville Condolences: www.eptingfuneralhome.com

1 comment:

  1. Bill was one of a kind, and I shall miss him. As you noted, he was active early and often on MasonicLight.net, and I received a PM from him one day inviting me to his Master Mason degree. This was back in the day, some 3000 years ago when I was Grand Lecturer, and he made it clear that he didn't expect me to actually show up, but I did anyway. He was shocked and delighted that some Grand Lodge officer he talked to on the internet but never actually met attended his MM just because he asked him to. It was the beginning of a long, delightful friendship. Bill was a good man, Mason and friend, and we are lesser for his absence.


Your comments will not appear immediately because I am forced to laboriously screen every post. I'm constantly bombarded with spam. Depending on the comments being made, anonymous postings on Masonic topics may be regarded with the same status as cowans and eavesdroppers, as far as I am concerned. If you post with an unknown or anonymous account, do not automatically expect to see your comment appear.