John Bass


John Bass John Wesley Bass age 91 of Westbrook passed away Monday, June 26, 2017 at the Valley View Manor in Lamberton.  Memorial services will be held at 10:00 am Saturday, July 8, at the Westbrook Community Center.  Visitation is Friday 5:00-7:00 pm at the Westbrook Funeral Home.  Interment is in the Westbrook Cemetery.  Stephens Funeral Service – Westbrook Funeral Home is assisting the family with arrangements.

John Wesley Bass was born November 23, 1925 to Harrison and Dorothy (Berger) Bass in Worthington.  He was the second of seven.  As a child, he lived in Ewington Township in Jackson County where he started school.  The family moved a couple more times before moving to Des Moines River Township near Westbrook.  While there, he completed school through the 8th grade in district #76.  After school, John worked on farms until he signed up to serve his country during WWII.  He served in the Navy about three years, and as an 18 year old, his first duty was behind the wheel steering the ship.  Many years later, he made a trip with his oldest grandson to see his ship, the USS Orion decommissioned at Norfolk, Virginia.

On July 29, 1949 he and Valeta Koch were united in marriage.  They lived in Westbrook their entire married life.  John worked for Wieler Plumbing and Heating in Westbrook.  He eventually purchased the business and named it Bass Plumbing and Heating.  John was a perfectionist in his work and took great pride that he was one of the original builders of the Westbrook Hospital.  He would often point out some of his workmanship that still exists there today.  He worked during the era where homes were starting to put in furnaces; indoor plumbing and eventually central air conditioning were being installed.

John was an active member of the American Legion and the Heritage House Museum in Westbrook.  He enjoyed playing cards and board games, and telling his grandchildren about his adventures in the Navy.

For most of his life, John didn’t attend church or believe in God.  After years of many people praying for John, on January 30, 2015 at 89 years old he realized he was in need of a Savior and accepted Jesus Christ as his Lord.  This was by far the best gift that he could ever receive, and one that brought great joy to his family.

His grateful family includes his children: Marvin of Bloomington, Carol Pankonin of Lamberton, Leo (Marty) of Marshall, Kenneth (Dawn) of Sauk Centre, & Vern (Tammy) of Truman; grandchildren: Jason (Darlene) Pankonin, Kyle (Kari) Pankonin, Sarah (James) Rains, Alex (Jenny) Pankonin, Aaron Bass, Rachel Bass, Michelle (Tyler) Schoep, Rick (Jodi) Bass, Brian (Trish) Bass, Janell (Ryan) Walters & Wesley Bass; 16 great grandchildren; sisters: JoAnn Bartlett of Yankton, SD, & Mary (Gary) Drever of Redwood Falls; and sisters in law: Evelyn Bass, Diane Bass and Marlys Bass.  Preceding him in death are his parents, wife Valeta, son in law Russell Pankonin, sister Leona Ackman, brothers: Lewis “Luke”, Ralph and Lee, and brothers in law Edward Ackman & Dale Bartlett.


  1. MKay and Bruce Pederson says:

    Ken and Dawn and family of John. So sorry for your loss, it sounds like he was a very blessed man.

  2. Timothy Tillma says:

    John Will be missed. He was a great guy and I will never forget the bear in his chair. Thank you for the good memories. Godspeed to the entire family.

  3. Lisa Anderson says:

    John will be missed. I will never forget all the nice visits we had. Wonderful man. My deepest sympathy to his family.

  4. David and Carol Berger says:

    So glad my cousin accepeted JESUS and has a new address in heaven. I remember as a kid growing up, when we would have the family reunions at Uncle Pete’s and Aunt Dorothy’s farm. Being one of the younger cousins we were usually selected last for one of the teams for a softball game. It was so much fun and so many wonderful memories. To Johns family and his extended family and his sisters Jo Ann, and Mary, with your loss we ask GOD to heal your sorrow and may you keep all the treasured memories of John close to your heart. Love and Gods Blessings, Dave and Carol Berger

  5. Sue winges says:

    Ken and Dawn and family- so sorry for your loss

Share Your Condolences

HTML tags are not allowed.


33,433 Spambots Blocked by Simple Comments