James R. Bassett was born on 27 September 1937 and enlisted in the U.S. Air Force during February 1957 from Manitowoc, Wisconsin.
After completing Basic Training he spent a few short months at Eglin AFB, FL (4/57-8/57) before being sent overseas to Itazuke AB, Japan (8/57-9/60) where he worked in the Orderly Room of the 68th Fighter Interceptor Squadron.
Upon return to the U.S., he was assigned as the personnel clerk in the Air Base Support Group and Chief Clerk in the OSI Office on Pope AFB, NC from Sep 1960 to April 1962. It was while there that he received word that his application for OCS had been approved and he was to report to Lackland AFB to attend Class 63A.
After OCS, Jim was sent to Amarillo AFB, TX (10/62-12/62) to complete the Supply Officer Course. Then he was off to McConnell AFB, KS (1/63-7/66) where he served as OIC, Bench Stock Support Branch, then Wing Logistics Plans Officer and finally as OIC, AFK Special Weapons Supply Account.
Another overseas tour was next – Darmstadt, Germany (8/66-9/69) where he served as Group Supply Officer in the 6910th Security Wing. After Germany he was sent to Bien Hua AB, RVN (9/69-9/70) working with the “Red Horse” Civil Engineer Sq as its Logistics Officer.
Next he found himself at Randolph AFB, TX and HQ ATC as chief, Aircraft Support Branch, Weapons Systems Support Division, DCS, Material. While at Randolph AFB he met his future wife, Rosita. Jim’s final Air Force assignment was at Beale AFB, CA where he was employed in Base Supply as the Management and Procedures Officer.
Jim retired effective March 1, 1977, after 20 years service, in the grade of Major. While at Beale AFB he married Rosita, in the base Chapel, exactly a year after they had met in Texas. When Jim entered OCS he had completed two years college and since has earned his Bachelors degree in Business Administration/Management.
He used his supply officer experiences to obtain civilian work after retirement. His first job was as a manager with a wholesale florist supply company (1978-79) in Sacramento. Soon, however, he headed for New Mexico and employment with the State of New Mexico as a procurement specialist (1979-80) then as Manager, State Transportation Pool (1980-88).
Jim was first married to Evangeline Bassett in San Antonio, TX. They had two children; William (born in Wiesbaden, Germany) and Ursula (born in Wichita, KS). Following his divorce, Jim and Rosita remained in Santa Fe until last year (2002) when they moved to their new retirement home in Albuquerque, New Mexico.