James (Jim) Arthur Hasse, 61, formerly of Athens, Pa., passed away unexpectedly due to a fall while climbing South Maroon Peak in the Colorado mountains on Wednesday, July 10, 2019.
Jim is survived by his wife Kathryn (Brown) Hasse; his parents, Ronald and Joann (O’Connor) Hasse, his brothers Robert, Thomas, and David Hasse; children, Michael and Debra Hasse, as well as seven nieces and nephews.
Jim graduated from Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1979 with a B.S. in Chemical Engineering. He joined DuPont in Baytown, TX, in 1979 and spent 40 years as an engineer and Environment Health and Safety professional for DuPont. He and Kathryn dated through college and married in 1981. They spent the first ten years of their marriage in Houston, where they were the Advisors for High Adventure Explorer Post 2001. In 1990 they moved to Athens, Pa., as a result of an internal transfer to the DuPont plant in Towanda, Pa.. Shortly after moving to Athens, Jim and Kathryn began Explorer Post 105, now Venture Crew 105, a co-ed high adventure branch of the Boy Scouts of America for high school students. Together, they led monthly camping, hiking, climbing, skiing, and kayaking trips all over the Northeast as well as longer trips out West to the Colorado Rockies and Utah desert. The annual “big trip”, and all the Venture Crew activities, were funded each year by Venture Crew 105’s Giant Garage Sale, which became a fixture of the community. Jim believed strongly that no crew member should be denied the opportunity to participate in activities due to financial limitations and the community strongly supported this annual fund-raiser. Jim also became heavily involved with the Science Olympiad Team from Athens Area High School, where he served as the coach for events such as Sound of Music, Scrambler, and Storm the Castle, where participants had to build devices such as musical instruments, egg-protecting cars, and catapults and then compete against devices from other schools. A highlight of Jim’s Science Olympiad years was when the High School team qualified for the National Invitational Tournament. Jim continued to lead Venture Crew 105 and coach Athens High School Science Olympiad until 2011 when he and Kathryn moved to Cedar Hill, TX.
Jim’s two greatest passions in life, other than his wife and children, were enjoyment of the outdoors and the mentoring of those in need. His mountaineering career extended nearly 50 years, with highlights such as an ascent of Wyoming’s Grand Teton at 13 years old, summiting all 54 of Colorado’s 14,000 foot peaks at least twice, climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro in Africa, and multiple expeditions to Alaska. Jim’s legacy is defined not by his mountaineering accomplishments but by the impact of his mentorship. Through Explorer Post 2001, Venture Crew 105 and the Athens Science Olympiad Team, Jim helped hundreds of young adults find their way, sometimes literally, by instilling leadership, teamwork, problem-solving skills, and self-confidence. He will be sorely missed. Grief over his loss extends well beyond the Hasse family to all the people whose lives he changed and the community he loved.
A Celebration of Life will be held at 3 p.m. at the Athens Wesleyan Church on Saturday, September 7, 2019. All who wish to celebrate the life and legacy of Jim Hasse are welcome to come join the Hasse family and share their stories of Jim.
In lieu of flowers, donations in remembrance of Jim may be sent to Colorado Fourteeners Initiative, 1600 Jackson St., #205, Golden CO 80401. CFI protects and preserves Colorado’s 14,000-foot peaks — “Fourteeners” — through active stewardship and public education. Or to Jim Hasse Memorial Science Olympiad Scholarship
c/o Athens Area High School
Attn: Lori Wells
401 West Frederick Street
Athens, PA 18810