September 16, 2013

Jean Bass Tinsley

Jean Bass Tinsley, 91, went peacefully to the Lord on Saturday, Sept. 14.

She was born on May 19, 1922, in Michigan City, Ind. 

She was a resident of Calhoun from 1963 to 2005 and Dalton prior to her death.

She was a member of St. Mark’s Episcopal Church, Dalton, and a founding member of St. Timothy’s Episcopal Church, Calhoun. In 2003 she completed a five-year program of study for theological education for ministry through the University of the South, School of Theology.  

She is survived by her daughter, Debby Ross of Athens; son, Pete Tinsley (Bunny) of Carmel, Ind.; daughter, Cindy Dennerline (Don) of Athens; son, David Tinsley (Karen) of Queens, N.Y., and beloved grandsons, Andrew, Winston, Tim, Daniel, Logan, Chris, Thomas and Robert.  

She was preceded in death by her parents, Robert and Maurine Bass; loving husband of 47 years, Jim Tinsley; dear brother, Jim Bass; and her beloved cat, Beau. 

Jean was best known as an adventurer, quilter, swimming instructor, cat-lover and Christian. She and her late husband Jim enjoyed camping, sailing, scuba diving, square dancing and traveling around the U.S. and other countries. In her later years she became an avid quilter and was a member of the Allatoona Quilters Guild and St. Mark’s Quilters Guild. Perhaps best known for her love of the water, Jean spent more than five decades offering private swimming lessons to generations of families in Gordon County. In 2008 she earned three gold medals in the Georgia Senior Olympics in swimming which qualified her to compete in the 2009 National Senior Games where she earned silver and bronze medals at the age of 87. For more on Jean’s swimming history see Calhoun Times, Sept. 14, 2005. 

In lieu of flowers the family asks that donations be made to any of Jean’s favorite causes including your local animal rescue shelter, Heifer International or Biblical Ministries Worldwide. 

Sign the guestbook and leave online condolences at

Bernstein Funeral Home and Cremation Service of Athens is in charge of arrangements.

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