Walter R. Shublom, Merriam, Kan, died on Feb. 14, 2009, at Shawnee Mission Medical Center. He was 86 years old and had been in declining health for the past year. Born to Rudolph and Alma Shublom on Feb. 5, 1923, on the family farm near Salina, Kan., he attended rural school and was a 1941 graduate of Salina High School. An avid athlete, he played minor league baseball and signed with the Pittsburgh Pirates Farm Organization prior to joining the Navy in 1942. After his discharge from Naval service in the Philippines during World War II, he completed his bachelor degree at Southeast Missouri State Teachers College. In 1946 he married Lillian Pulliam of Bloomfield and started his teaching career at Bloomfield High School. In 1952 after earning his masters degree from the University of Kansas, he joined the faculty of Wyandotte High School in Kansas City, Kan., as history teacher and assistant baseball and basketball coach. He was appointed head basketball coach in 1954 and in the subsequent 15 years developed the Wyandotte basketball program to a level of national recognition with 10 state championships, three runners up and a win loss record of 296-26. Leaving Wyandotte after the 1969 season, he went to the University of Missouri as assistant coach in charge of freshman basketball. He stayed there two years with a combined record of 21 wins and two losses, returning to Kansas City, Kan., in 1972 as basketball coach and athletic director for Kansas City Kansas Community College. He retired from coaching in 1982 and as athletic director and assistant to the president in 1985.
During his coaching career, he was in great demand as a speaker at coaching conventions and athletic events thoughout the country. He authored three books on basketball coaching and for many years operated the Clinic of Champions coaching clinic. He was a member of National High School Sports Hall of Fame, the Kansas Sports Hall of Fame, the Kansas State High School Activities Association Hall of Fame, the Missouri Sports Hall of Fame and was the recipient of many other awards and honors. His most cherished recognition was the 2003 naming of the Wyandotte High School Gymnasium in his honor.
He was a long time resident of Kansas City, Kan., and was a member of Trinity United Methodist Church. He enjoyed fishing as hobby. He is survived by his wife of 62 years, Lillian; a sister, Cristine Kubitschek of Salina, Kan.; a daughter, Mary Ann (Charles) Gunnerson of Pratt, Kan.; a son, Sam Shublom of Kansas City, Kan.; two grandsons, Sam Ross and Will Reid of Lawrence, Kan.; four nieces and two nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents and a sister, Pauline Weber of Fairway, Kan.
Services were held Tuesday, Feb. 17, 2009, at Trinity United Methodist Church, 5010 Parallel Parkway, Kansas City, Kan., with visitation from 9-11 a.m. and service followed.
Interment followed at Chapel Hill Memorial Gardens, Kansas City, Kan. Memorials may be made to Trinity United Methodist Church, the Kansas City, Kan., Community College Endowment Fund or a charity of your choice.