Richard W. Hillman, a 33rd-degree Mason who was active in national, state and local Masonic organizations, died Sunday (Sept. 27, 1998) in Millard Fillmore Suburban Hospital, Amherst, after a brief illness. He was 79.
A Buffalo native, Hillman served in 1993 as preceptor of Good Shepherd Tabernacle 30 of the Holy Royal Arch Knights Templar Priests and in 1990 was eminent prior of the Empire State Priory 46 Knights of York of Hounor.
He was a member of Buffalo Consistory, Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite.
He also was a deacon at Trinity United Church of Christ for many years.
A graduate of Burgard Vocational High School, Hillman worked several decades for Reiber Roofers, which specialed in commercial sheet-metal roofing projects. He retired in 1980.
Hillman was a Navy veteran of World War II.
As a Mason, Hillman was a past master of Queen City Lodge 358, F&AM. In the 1970s, he was active with the Buffalo Keystone Lake Erie Knights Templar.
In 1954, he served as a high priest of Germania Chapter 256, Royal Arch Masons. He was an illustrious master of Buffalo Keystone Court 17, Cryptic Masons, and served as commander in 1958 of Lake Erie Commandery 20.
He was a grand representative of the Knights of Templar in Oklahoma and served as the grand commander of the Knights Templar in New York State since 1976. During the 1980s, he served as grand treasurer for Knights Templar and was named grand treasurer emeritus.
Hillman also was sovereign master in 1979-80 for Sylvanus F. New York Council 37 and a member of the Allied Mason Degrees of the United States of America. He served as pre-eminent governor of the Niagara Frontier York Rite College 77 and held the Order of the Purple Cross.
His wife of 57 years, Dorothy Allen Hillman, died in 1996.
Survivors include a daughter, Sandra Bostwick of Clarence Center; a brother, Edward of Lancaster; seven grandchildren; and seven great-grandchildren.
Chapel services, followed by Masonic services, will be held at 10 a.m. Wednesday in Urban Brothers Funeral Home, 6685 Transit Road, East Amherst. Burial will be in Acacia Park Cemetery, Pendleton.