Michael Wallace Bassett, 49, died October 9 in Ladson, South Carolina. He was preceded in death by his parents Frederick William Bassett and Peggy Roberts Bassett.
Michael was a poet, visual artist, scholar, and teacher. He earned a B.A. from Wofford College with a double major in philosophy and religion, an MFA in creative writing from Vermont College, and a Ph.D. in creative writing from the University of Southern Mississippi. He taught English and creative writing for 25 years at various institutions, including LaGrange Academy, North Broward Preparatory School, his alma mater Hilton Head Preparatory School, and Timberland High School. He was a dedicated teacher who inspired students with his love of language and passion for ideas. He was also a generous and nurturing person who genuinely cared for his students and wanted them to feel safe and valued.
Michael was an accomplished poet and a previous winner of the Fugue Poetry Contest and the Joan Johnson Award. His poems have appeared in numerous journals and anthologies. He also published three chapbooks: Karma Puppets, A Train Dreams of When it was a Killer Whale and More Exhibits from the Museum of Other, and Waiting for Love to Make My Phone Explode, as well as one full-length book of poetry, Hatchery of Tongues, and a children's book, Batrocks and Greenie.
He was a doting uncle and enjoyed sharing his love for and encyclopedic knowledge about books, music, and film. He was loved by family and friends who will miss him greatly. He is survived by his twin brother Jonathan (Lori), his nephew Lucas, and niece Ella, of Greenwood, SC.
A memorial service will be held at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that you honor Michael's generous spirit with a memorial contribution to the charitable organization of your choice.