KASTER, JAMES JAY (1933 ~ 2005) James Jay "Jim" Kaster, V, state representative, was born July 4, 1933, in El Paso, Texas, to James Jay "Jim," IV, a former Postmaster of El Paso, and Louize Kaster. A honors graduate from Texas Western College, now U.T. El Paso, Kaster received a bachelor of business arts degree in 1957. He was a veteran of the U.S. Navy during the Korean War. He was named El Paso's Outstanding Young Man in 1964. He was also past president of the El Paso Downtown Lions Club and also the Austin Founder Lions Club. He was a Past District Governor of Lions. From Lions International he received three International President's Awards and Lions International's highest award, the Ambassador of Goodwill Award. He also received the Gold Nugget Award from the University of Texas at El Paso School of Business in 1988.
He served in the Texas House of Representatives for four terms from El Paso beginning in 1971, and was later El Paso County Tax Assessor-Collector. He then became Legislative Liaison for Governor William P. Clements from 1979 to 1983 and 1987. Clements appointed Kaster to the Industrial Accident Board (now Workers Compensation Commission) and then later appointed him Chairman of the Texas Employment Commission.
Since retirement, Jim enjoyed driving a school bus for the Eanes Independent School District. He served on the General Staff of the Confederate Air Force in Midland for eight years. In his last year he served as Chief of Staff. He has also been on the McDonald Observatory Board of Visitors for over 20 years.
Jim Kaster passed away on Friday, July 22, 2005, and was buried in the Texas State Cemetery four days later, next to his wife, Helene. He is survived by his six children, Jim Kaster, VI; Deborah, and husband Brad Pfluger; Laura, and husband, Tom Mathews, Kathie Geary, John Kaster, and Rustie Kaster. He had eight beloved grandchildren, Grant, Audrey and Marshal Pfluger, Austin and Taylor Geary, and Kayla, Devin and Haley Kaster.
Jim was a devoted and beloved husband and father. He served his county and his state with pride, diligence and honesty. He was a man of unquestioned integrity with an ever- positive outlook and uncanny zeal for life. He took great pride in his family, enjoyed a good joke, fine food and wine, and was an accomplished chef. Jim had a lifelong love of flying which began in the seat of a crop duster at age 4. Jim will be missed and fondly remembered by all who knew him.
Information taken from the Austin American-Statesman, July 25, 2005.