Richard Andrews Houser, 58
Rich was born on Aug. 1, 1961, in Long Beach, Calif., to John and Sharon (Stanley) Houser. He lost his battle with brain cancer and went home to Jesus on May 3, 2020.
Rich was raised in Tacoma, Wash., with his three siblings, Michael, Greg and Holly. He graduated from Lincoln High School in 1979 with a wrestling scholarship to Multnomah University, where he planned to study biological sciences and become a mortician.
Rich met his future wife, Pamela Dawson and daughter, in Spirit Lake, Idaho, in August, 1980. They were married on Nov. 25, 1980, followed by a beautiful ceremony on Jan. 10, 1981, at the Good Shepard Lutheran Church in Tacoma. They purchased their first home in Tacoma, where Rich worked for Spring Air Mattress and the family business, Big John’s Trophies.
In 1983, Rich and Pam moved to Idaho to raise their growing family. Rich worked in construction before working in the press room at Century Publishing. He was hired by Kootenai County Assessors office in 1986 as a real estate property appraiser. After 13 years he accepted a position with Metropolitan Mortgage in Spokane, where he enhanced his education, experience and earned several certifications and designations.
In 2002, Rich returned to the Kootenai County Assessors office and in 2003, was appointed chief deputy assessor by Mike McDowell. He managed over 75 employees in the assessor’s office and department of motor vehicles in Post Falls and Coeur d’Alene. Rich was elected Kootenai County Assessor in November 2018 and sworn into office in January 2019.
Rich served as a precinct committeeman for the Kootenai County Republican Central Committee as well as on numerous state and local boards and committees. He was never just a member of any organization; he was an active servant. His greatest strength was in finance and budgets, and he served as treasurer of the Friends Church board, Post Falls Church of the Nazarene and the Post Falls Lions Club. Shortly before his cancer diagnosis he was serving as a greeter at Real Life Ministries. He also served on the Post Falls Urban Renewal Commission.
Rich grilled thousands of hamburgers with the Post Falls Community Volunteers and was a long-time member of the Post Falls Parade Committee. He coached wrestling, baseball and junior tackle football and officiated high school and junior college wrestling for 25 years. Rich was inducted into the Idaho Sports Hall of Fame in 2006. He also received the Post Falls Chamber Volunteer of the Year Award.
As an alumni of the Boys and Girls Club, he was most passionate about serving as a founding member of the Boys and Girls Club of Kootenai County.
Rich loved dirt bikes, floating the North Fork of the Coeur d’Alene River, panning for gold, fly fishing, golf and audiobooks. His greatest accomplishment was his family, and while he was dedicated to his career, he often took side jobs to earn a little extra to expose his family to unforgettable experiences including Caribbean cruises, coastal vacations and local camping adventures. He lived his best life every day.
Rich is survived by his wife of almost 40 years, Pam Houser; daughters Nellie Armstrong (David), Bethany Atkinson, Andrew Houser (Sara) and grandchildren Chalee and Becca Atkinson, Elijah Ott, Sofia Armstrong and Dawson Houser, due later in May; parents John and Sharon Houser; siblings Mike Houser (Kerri), Greg Houser, Holly Houser, Polly Johnson (Garrett), Peggy Beebe (George) and Michael Dawson (Tracey Lynn); father-in-law, Mike Dawson, and mother-in-law, Linda Dawson Puls; and 39 nieces and nephews, including greats.
If you wish to honor Rich’s life, contributions in his name (in the memo line) to Boys and Girls Clubs of Kootenai County, 200 W. Mullan Ave., Post Falls, ID 83854 or NI Young Life Camp Scholarships, PO Box 3087, Coeur d’Alene, ID 83816, would be appreciated.
A celebration of Rich’s life will be held at 11 a.m. on Saturday, May 16, 2020, at Real Life Ministries, 1860 N. Cecil Road, Post Falls.
Visit Rich’s memorial and sign his online guestbook at www.englishfuneralchapel.com.