Stevens Memorial Chapel

607 28th Street, Ames, IA


Betty Jean Pepper

November 26, 1925December 3, 2019

Betty Jean (Bass) Pepper, 94, of Boone, IA, passed away on December 3, 2019 at Mary Greeley Hospital. A visitation will be held Thursday, December 12, 2019 from 5:00pm-7:00pm at Stevens Memorial Chapel (607 28th St., Ames, IA 50010) with the funeral mass on Friday, December 13, 2019 at Sacred Heart Catholic Church (915 12th St, Boone, IA 50036) at 11:00am. Burial to follow at Ames Municipal Cemetery.

Betty was born November 26, 1925, at Boone Iowa Hospital to Edward and Ella (McBride) Bass. Betty graduated from Boone High School in 1944. Her first job was at Ordinance plant in Ankeny, IA (WW #2). Betty worked on machine gauged 30 and 50 caliber loaded bullets. She said she was very scared at this job but it was good money and worked with wonderful people.

After WW2 she married the love of her life, James J Pepper at St. Peters and Paul Catholic Church in Gilbert, Iowa on March 15, 1945. Betty and James farmed so she become a farmers wife, it was very hard work. In 1958 they decided to leave farming and move to Ames, Iowa. James started work at Iowa State University and became an electrician.

After her third daughter started school Betty went to work for Ames Laboratory at Iowa State University. She started in High Energy Physics Group as a scanner, Betty looked at film and measured particles on machines. After 3 years Betty became supervisor and had a crew of 15 to 20 girls. When computers took over Betty’s job she became a plate marker. She worked for 25 years for Iowa State University.

When Betty's husband passed away she started doing some traveling. She enjoyed going and visiting her daughters and grandchildren in Florida. Loved looking for shells on the beach and caught her first shark surf fishing. She loved her trip to New York and Branson, Missouri. Betty’s favorite sport was Iowa State men's basketball. Even if they didnt have the best season to her they were still the best.

Betty is survived by her three children, Sandra (David) Henninger, Cynthia (Rich) Cooper, James Edward (Lindsey) Pepper; 7 grandchildren and 9 great grandchildren.

Betty preceded by her parents, Edward and Ella Bass; brothers, Dick Bass, George Bass and Jack Bass; sisters Mary Titone and Alice Upchurch; husband, James J and daughter, Janice J Perkovich. In lieu of flowers, please send memorial contributions to any Veterans charity of your choice or Saint Jude's Childrens Hospital.

Online condolences may be made at www.StevensMemorialChapel.com


  • Chad Bass , Active Pallbearer
  • Chris Lybarger, Active Pallbearer
  • Brandon Lybarger, Active Pallbearer
  • Cory Corbin , Active Pallbearer
  • Jacob Howell , Active Pallbearer
  • Mike Guerra , Active Pallbearer


  • Visitation Thursday, December 12, 2019
  • Funeral Mass Friday, December 13, 2019


Betty Jean Pepper

have a memory or condolence to add?

Mike & Lynn Young

December 12, 2019

Dear Betty,

You are safe with Jesus now. We will always remember the great times we had when you visited Rich and Cindy. You are our “Mom from Iowa!”

Till we meet again. God bless. Love you.

Mike & Lynn

Donna Brooks

December 11, 2019

Love and prayers from your Florida family we always remember the fun we had with moms visits . May she rest peace and memories of her will be with us always Love you all from the Brooks Gang

Sheryl Lane

December 10, 2019

I'm so sorry to hear about your mom. She was such a sweet lady and will be missed by all that were blessed to have known her. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.


December 9, 2019

Just wanted to say, from all of the Hockman family, our thoughts, our prayers, and our best wishes go out to the family!! Betty was never out of my moms thoughts. They were true, life-long friends. Not many people have had close friends dating clear back to grade school, and thru the years, treated each other like sisters. Our family will never forget Betty, and what she meant to my mom. There friendship was special, and they will now be together again.

Sharon Jacobs

December 9, 2019

My deepest sympathy to you and your family in the loss of your mom. Rest In Peace Betty 💕