The bassist passed away after suffering complications from pneumonia on 15 July (15) in Newport Beach, California, according to the New York Times.

Rumsey began his career with jazz composer Stan Kenton's first band, but left after an argument. He also played with jazz musicians Charlie Barnet, Barney Bigard, Vido Musso and actor/singer Johnnie Davis, before taking over the Lighthouse Cafe in Hermosa Beach, California in the late 1940s.

He subsequently formed the Lighthouse All-Stars ensemble and its namesake label, Lighthouse Records.

Under the firm, he released albums which were recorded live in the nightclub, including Music for Lighthousekeeping and Lighthouse at Laguna.

During the band's tenure, musicians including tenor saxophonist Teddy Edwards, pianist Hampton Hawes and drummer Max Roach performed with the group.

Rumsey also founded the Intercollegiate Jazz Festival in the 1950s.