School 21

James D Mason

July 31, 1931 ~ December 17, 2020 (age 89)

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James Mason had a long, multi-faceted career in San Diego.  He arrived here in 1958 as a young graduate and worked in the banking and the aerospace industries.  He had a passion for instruction, however, and left a career in finance for education, first teaching in elementary school and then becoming a professor of Economics at Mesa College where he taught for 38 years.  During that time he won the Kazanjian Foundation Award for Teaching Economics. He continued developing his teaching career, with doctoral work in Instructional Technology and applied the education to audio-graphic and animated video modules for Economics textbooks and the application of digital materials for classroom presentation and expanded awareness and learning.
James stayed involved in business administration, as a small business consultant and as a founder and entrepreneur in a firearms accessory business.  He was active throughout his life as a small arms and ballistics consultant to the San Diego Sheriff’s office and as a forensic witness and firearms examiner, consulting in 75 trials related to functional failures, manipulations and accidents involving firearms.  He authored 200 technical and semi-technical articles published over 35 years in major shooting journals and annuals, as well as two books on firearms and shooting: “Combat Handgun Shooting,” and “Blue Steel and Gun Leather” (ghost writer).  James also pursued his interests in photography and firearms professionally, holding 6 patents.  He was a life member of the National Defense Industry Association, the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics and the National Rifle Association.
James retired from teaching in 2001 and moved to Las Vegas, but returned to San Diego in 2015. He was residing at Oakmont of Escondido Hills.
No services are planned, but a donation made to the Mayo Clinic’s Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center would be an appreciated gesture.


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1. Donation to Kiyan Theo Afzali’s college fund

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