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Remembering Carl James Bissett

Founder of Bissett Specialty Equipment Inc. and long-time pecan industry member

Carl Bissett wears a white cowboy hat and a red polka-dot button down with a brown blazer. He gives a big smile toward the camera.

Carl J. Bissett

“We are heartbroken to share the news of Carl Bissett’s passing,” Blair Krebs, Publisher of Pecan South, writes. “Carl was a constant presence in the pecan industry, leading Bissett Specialty Equipment and generously sharing his time with many of the families involved. I was lucky to have known Carl for my entire career, and among other things, his dedication to getting the job done, paired with his warm, jovial friendship, will be greatly missed. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and many friends.”

Carl James Bissett sadly left us way too soon on Thursday, Dec. 15, 2022. He was a loving husband, a wonderful father to three daughters, a friend to all, and a self-made man, who built a successful business supporting the farmers across the Southwest.

He was born in Marlette, Michigan, on November 8th, 1951, and raised in Sandusky, Michigan, by Fred and Pauline Bissett. Carl is the 4th child of five. He is survived by all four of his siblings, William (Bill) Bissett, Bonnie Nolan, Mary Vandewarker, and Walter Bissett. After high school, he was drafted into the Army and graduated basic training in July 1971. Shortly thereafter, he was sent to Korea as a Military Policeman and was honorably discharged two years later, to work as a mechanic for a tractor dealership in his hometown. Carl then moved to Salem Indiana in 1975, as a regional sales representative and then, manager for Ford New Holland. This is where he met and married his first wife, Diane in 1977. They had two lovely daughters, Jennifer in 1979 and Courtney in 1982. They lived in Salem, Indiana, until 1988, when they moved to El Paso, Texas, where Carl established his business, “Bissett Specialty Equipment Inc.” In this role of business owner, he created and fostered life-long friendships, across the country. Carl, then married Joan Norton, on Jun 19, 1995. Carl brought his two lovely daughters into this new family, and in 1997, Carl and Joan had their daughter, Carlee.

“We have all lost a man who impacted our lives in such a positive and lasting way. He was always one to be there for you during the toughest of times and found every opportunity to help and support everyone in his own unique way,” his family writes.

He loved hunting, fishing, gardening, animals, cooking, and the outdoors. However, he enjoyed entertaining and spending time with friends and family over a good bottle of wine and a great meal most of all. Carl is survived by his wife, Joan Bissett; daughters, Jenifer Ford (James), Courtney Royko (Josh), Carlee Bissett; older brother, William Bissett (Linda); older sisters, Bonnie Nolan and Mary Vandewarker (Larry), and his younger brother; Walter Bissett (Tristan). As well as many loved nieces, nephews, and his puppy dog, Bella.”

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that you donate to The American Heart Association in his name.

Originally posted online on Dec. 20, 2022, and published in the El Paso Times.