Wilburn Bass

Wilburn "Arkie" Bass


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G. Wilburn "Arkie" Bass, 92, passed away Monday, June 5, 2023 at his home in West Branch.

Private family services will be held with burial in the West Branch Cemetery. A celebration of life mass will be held at St. Bernadette Catholic Church in West Branch at a later date.

In lieu of flowers memorials may be made to Iowa City Hospice. 

Giles Wilburn Bass was born August 25, 1930, the son of G.W. and Josephine (Dixon) Bass in Butlerville, Arkansas. He was a 1948 graduate of Cabot, Arkansas High School. He went to work for the Rock Island Railroad, where he served as a signalman working from Colorado to Illinois. While in lowa, he met Patricia Bramon and they were married on August 23, 1952 in Nevada, lowa. He worked on the railroad for 32 years, he then worked at Procter and Gamble in lowa City, in HVAC maintenance retiring in 1992 after 12 years.

Arkie was a member of St. Bernadette Catholic Church, where he served on the board. He was an avid golfer, playing many years at the West Branch Country Club in the men's league. He had many favorite playing buddies, but his most devoted was his dog Daisy.

He was a Johnson County Master Gardener and worked on the Hort Line. His home and gardens were featured in the annual West Branch Garden Tour. 

He delivered Meals on Wheels after retirement and received a certificate of appreciation from the City of West Branch for his many years of service as a member of the West Branch Planning and Zoning Committee.

Arkie worked on the West Branch High School Football Chain Gang for 25 years and was a strong supporter of the West Branch Bears, Arkansas Razorbacks, and Chicago Bears.

He is survived by his wife of 71 years Patricia of West Branch; two children: Pat (Roger) Dow of Ohio and Gary (Yolanda) Bass of West Branch; five grandchildren: Dustin (Theresa) Dow of Ohio, Katie (Jason) Kowalczk of Maryland, Joshua (Alexandra) Dow of North Carolina, Gary (Tammy) Bass of lowa City, and Kristin (Dan) Doyle of Texas; eleven great grandchildren: Miles and Lucia Dow, Kelsey and Jacob Kowalczk, Eden, Declan, and Isaac Dow, Cora, Giles and Bryce Bass, and Derek Doyle; sister Luola Bass Mathers of New Mexico and brother Vernon (Linda) Bass of Arkansas, as well as numerous nieces and nephews. 

He was preceded in death by his parents, brother Ralva Ray Bass, sister Retha Mae Fudge and great-grandson Jude Matthew Dow.



Private Family Services wtih burial will be held.

A celebration of life mass is being planned.

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