James Morris "Jim" Bass

January 22, 1913August 20, 2010

James M. Bass

James Morris “Jim” Bass passed away Friday, August 20, 2010, at his home in San Angelo, Texas, at the age of 97. Jim was born January 22, 1913, in Brownsville, Texas, to John Isador and Mary Alberta Bass.

It was during Jim’s youth in his hometown of Paris, Texas, when the automobile first became a significant part of his life. He was working part time in garages and gas stations, and soon realized he enjoyed being around anything related to cars. After attending Paris Junior College, he went to work for an auto parts business.

Jim worked for Ford Motor Company in the Dallas district office for more than 15 years. As part of his job, he would travel throughout West Texas calling on Ford dealerships. It was during this time, he became aware of San Angelo and the possibility of living here. In 1961, Jim was able to purchase the San Angelo Ford dealership with his friend from the Dallas area, Lee Jarmon. From the beginning and for 49 years, Jim was passionate about all aspects of Jim Bass Ford – the products sold, the services provided, his customers, but perhaps most notably, his employees. His affection for everyone associated with any part of the dealership was evident to all who worked for him.

After Jim’s move to San Angelo, he met Irene and her daughter, Cheri. On July 5, 1962, in Corpus Christi, Texas, Jim and Irene, were married and with their children, Leslie, John and Cheri, became the original “Bass Bunch.”

Jim and Irene purchased a ranch in 1991 and spent many memorable times there enjoying the wildlife and being outdoors. He really got a kick out driving around the ranch and feeding his guard donkey, Poncho. In latter years, his hobbies were politics, naps and a never-ending involvement in his businesses.

Among Jim’s other passions was his love of his country. Being a World War II veteran, he whole heartedly supported our armed forces and all military service personnel. Jim was a member of First United Methodist Church; a member of the Rotary Club and a Paul Harris Fellow; and active in the San Angelo community, serving on various boards and organizations. He was a steadfast supporter of the Lighthouse for the Blind, the United Way and Meals for the Elderly.

Jim was preceded in death by his wife, Irene Bass, his sister, Evelyn Leary and his cousin and best friends, Butchie and Bill Bryan. He is survived by his son, James M. Bass, Jr., of Fort Worth; his daughter and son-in-law, Leslie and Greg Gossett; his son and daughter-in-law, John and Jeannie Bass; and his daughter, Cheri Holt, all of San Angelo.

Also surviving Jim are his grandchildren Jimmy Bass and wife Stefanie, Kelley Rivalta and husband Reno, Stephen Gossett and fiancé Catherine King, Sarah Cypert and husband Wade, Allison Chapman and husband Matt, Melanie Bass, James Holt and David Holt and wife Stephnie, and his 13 great grandchildren: Chelsea, Adyson, James, Jayce, RJ, Bella, Klaire, Lily, Wayd, Austin, Brendan, Mackenzie and Hailey. Also surviving Jim are his dear niece, Carolyn Reidy of Loveland, Colorado and his very special friends, Frances and John South of San Angelo.

The Bass Family would like to express their sincere appreciation to Hospice of San Angelo and to the special ladies at Angelo Health Care – Mariza, Sylvia, Julia, Renee and Lupe – and all the others who pampered, spoiled and survived hours of Fox News at high volume.

Following a private graveside burial, there will be a celebration of Jim’s life on Monday, August 23, at 10:00 a.m., at First United Methodist Church of San Angelo, 37 East Beauregard. Dr. Ricky Burke of First United Methodist Church and Rev. Ben Hubert of First Christian Church of San Angelo will officiate.

Memorials may be made to Meals for the Elderly, 310 East Houston Harte, San Angelo, Texas 76903, or your favorite charity.

Family and friends may sign an online register book at Arrangements under the direction of Johnson's Funeral Home, San Angelo, TX.


  • Funeral Service Monday, August 23, 2010
  • Visitation Sunday, August 22, 2010

James Morris "Jim" Bass

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Mike Pollak

May 14, 2011

God bless the best person I haver known.Uu

September 12, 2010

Cheri and Leslie, I am so sorry for your loss. I remember how special you both were to me and I am glad you had your dad for all these years. God Bless you and yours. Cheryl Cypert Scott

Jim Robinson, Jr.

August 25, 2010

My thoughts and prayers are with you in your time of grief. May your memories bring you comfort.

Doss Rogers

August 25, 2010

Mr Bass and my Dad Bill Rogers were legends in the car business in West Texas, men of their word, stand up men of charcter. We will miss Mr. Bass.

Dave Wells

August 25, 2010

Our sincere sympathy to the Bass Family. Jim was a real champion of the Blind in San Angelo. He will be missed by the entire community.

The West Texas Lighthouse for the Blind

Dick Kibiloski

August 25, 2010

John, Jeannie, and Family,
Debbie and I were saddened to hear of the passing of Mr. Bass. We both have such fond memories of being a part of the Bass Bunch. He truly was one of a kind. Please accept our deepest sympathies.
Dick and Debbie Kibiloski

Ed Dietz III

August 24, 2010

What a man, what a legacy. I never had the privilege of meeting him, but knowing his sons and grandson and some of the grandkids tells you all you need to know. May he rest in peace and keep an eye on all of you..

Sarah Naifeh

August 23, 2010

As a Ford Motor Company employee, I had the privilege of calling on Mr. Bass and the whole "Bass Bunch". I consider Mr. Bass one of my West Texas mentors who taught me the "Car Bidniz". I'll never forget the many lunches at Dunbar's with Mr. Bass, John Bass, and Mike Lomas. Fun times, indeed! My thoughts are with the Bass Family/Bunch. Jim Bass...A Great Ford Dealer, A Great American, A Great Man.

Rosa and Gilbert Cedillo

August 23, 2010

I had the pleasure of meeting the Great Mr Bass at one of their annual Christmas parties. He was just as wonderful as we had heard. And now He is now surrounded by Angels and God in heaven. May God bless the caring Bass Family during your loss.

August 23, 2010

My thoughts and prayers are with you all during this time. He was a great man who touched many lives. May God Bless you all.
Margarite Stokes