POSTED: 1:34 p.m. HST, Aug 22, 2014
LAST UPDATED: 5:19 p.m. HST, Aug 22, 2014
Former state Rep. Bob Herkes died Thursday at Hilo Hospital. He was 83.
A Volcano resident, Herkes represented different portions of Hawaii island, primarily the Puna and Kona districts, for 18 years in the Legislature. He also served four years on the Hawaii County Council.
He last served in the House from 2002 to 2012, when he chose to forego reelection to the 5th House District (Mountain View to Kealakekua) to instead make an unsuccessful run for the Senate.
"A former state representative, state senator, Hawaii County Council member and local businessman, Bob had a solid record of getting things done for the people of Hawaii," said Gov. Neil Abercrombie in a news release. "His fierce dedication to the people of the Big Island and our entire state will be remembered."
House Speaker Joe Souki described Herkes as a champion of consumer rights, including the victims of mortgage foreclosures.
Souki said, "he was an early and strong advocate of natural disaster preparedness and was one of the first to call attention to the health effects of vog."
For about four decades, Herkes was a Hawaii island hotel executive. Also, he once served as vice president of the Kamehameha Investment Corp., in charge of Kamehameha Schools' properties on the island.
Born in Iloilo City in the Philippines, he was raised in Hilo.
Herkes is survived by his wife, Jo-Anna, and sons Bobby, Kenny and Doug.