James Edward Bilicki
July 30, 1949 – March 22, 2017
The Palm Desert tennis community lost one of its most beloved tennis players March 22, 2017. James Edward Bilicki was well known to his friends for his tough forehand and closet full of tennis shoes in every color imaginable.
Jim was born on July 30, 1949 in Port Jefferson New York where he was raised along with his two brothers by his parents Joseph and Alberta Bilicki. As a teenager Jim was one of very few East Coast surfers, spending time surfing on Long Island. This is also where Jim learned to play tennis, a sport for which he developed a lifelong passion.
He served in the United States Army Reserves and US Army and was honorably discharged in 1975.
At the age of 21 Jim earned his broker’s license in the State of New York. He always liked to brag he was one of the youngest ever to achieve this. He left New York for California for the sun and surf and to pursue his career as a real estate broker. After working with various companies, he opened his own firm Equity Commercial Real Estate Services in Thousand Oaks. He was very successful in his real estate career that spanned close to 50 years.
He married Larraine Daniel in 2005 and moved permanently to the Coachella Valley to continue his pursuit of perfection in his tennis game, enjoy life with Larraine and take advantage of the deserts’ fantastic weather allowing him to play tennis everyday! He played on many leagues, and won trophies in mixed doubles tournaments with Larraine and men’s doubles tournaments as well.
He was preceded in death by his two brothers Donald and Robert as well as his father Joseph. He is survived by his wife Larraine, son Jason, stepdaughters Tamara (Brad) and Trisha (Lou) and 5 grandchildren Joseph, Grant, Erika, Dante and Diego.
A private celebration of life is being planned.
In lieu of flowers, the family would appreciate donations to RMHS ASB Tennis in “Memory of Jim Bilicki. C/o of Owen McIntosh, 10 Oakmont Drive, Rancho Mirage, CA 92270.
Published in The Desert Sun on Mar. 31, 2017