Obituary Details

Harold "Hap" L. Jassman

(06/13/1908 - 02/28/1980)
Courtesy of The Lusk Herald, 03/06/1980

Harold (Hap) Jassman

Harold (Hap) Jassman, 71, died suddenly last Thursday morning at his Sage Creek Ranch home.

Mr. Jassman and his wife, Opal, who frequently commuted between their ranch and an apartment in Lusk, had gone to Sage Creek to spend the night. Mrs. Jassman was awakened by Hap, who was stoking their wood burning stove. The couple visited, and then she returned to bed. A short while later she found him dead.

Mrs. Jassman started to drive to the Lee James ranch, but became stuck en route and had to walk approximately one-and-a-half miles out of a steep, heavily wooded area. The Jassman ranch is located 20 miles northeast of Lusk.

Mr. Jassman was born June 13, 1908, in Tripp, S.D. When he was still an infant, the family moved to Harrison, bringing Hap in an apple box. About a year later they moved to the Lusk Area and settled on a ranch on the Divide (Kirtley area), where he grew up.

As a young man Hap worked as a rig builder at Lance Creek, as a sheep herder and a truck driver, but his greatest interest was in prospecting, which took him across the United States.

"Hap never got rich prospecting," his wife said. "His riches in life were the wonderful people he met across the nation while he was prospecting for gold, silver and uranium and filing claims."

He always had other jobs to support his prospecting, working for Interstate Oil and Development and for Utah Mining Co.

Hap and Opal Lawlis of Hill City, Kan., were married in Casper in 1953. Casper was their home base until Opal retired from nursing there in December of 1978.

"Hap" was a happy person who loved to visit with people and lived by an often used cliche of his, "wherever I go I'll go first class" said Mrs. Jassman.

Mr. Jassman spent years clearing the land, fencing, and building structures to make his inheritance into a livable, small ranch where he and Opal could retire. The remote location of the land made this a challenge.

"A challenge because he started from scratch - no buildings, only land that needed much attention," a close friend said. "It was with pride that Hap built his 'hide-a-way.'"

In addition to his wife, Hap is survived by Larry Jassman of Bend, Ore., a son by a previous marriage to Velma Brown.

Other survivors are a brother, John of Lusk; four sisters Sophie Klemke, Kathryn Jugler and Amelia Jassman, all of Lusk, and Elsie Bucholz of Minnesota; and three grandchildren.

A service was held Monday afternoon at Peet Mortuary, with the Rev. Maynard Lund officiating.

The organist was Minerva Watson, and Joy Kaltenheuser sang "Gold Mine In the Sky" and "Where We Will Never Grow Old."

Burial was at Lusk Cemetery.

Pallbearers were Robert Pfister, Pete Hansen, Henry Wasserburger Jr., Richard James, Lee James and Ed Bruegger.

Images & Attachments

Photo courtesy of the Joshua Brackett Eagle Scout Project

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