Senator John Scott Jr.’s legacy remembered by fellow colleagues
COLUMBIA, SC (WOLO) — Longtime South Carolina lawmaker, father, and husband, Senator John Scott Jr. passed away on Sunday at the age of sixty-nine.
Senator Scott served in the SC House of Representatives for 18 years before being elected to the Senate in 2008.
According to family members, the beloved husband and father died of an undisclosed medical condition at the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston.
In a statement released by Senate President Thomas Alexander, Scott’s family said he “passed away peaceably while surrounded by family and close friends.”
Senator Vernon Stephens and Senator Mike Fanning say Scott was a mentor to them both from the beginning.
“I can’t say enough about, you know, him — the person. The attitude and the determination. The competency. He was all of that plus more. You couldn’t find a more dedicated individual,” says Senator Stephens of District 39.
“He cared desperately about, not just me or the Senator next door, he cared about anyone who came across his path, and he showed us that when he talked to us, and he showed us that with his smile. And he could genuinely meet people where they were and try to move our state forward. We’ll miss that,” says Senator Fanning of District 17.
Both senators say Scott’s dedication to healthcare, the environment, expanding rural broadband, his support of education, and HBCU s across the state — were unwavering.
Including his alma mater South Carolina State University, where Scott received an accounting degree in 1975.
“He wanted to see the economy in South Carolina grow, and he knew that it would not be able to grow unless education was put at the forefront. And he believed, as I believe, that education drives the economic train,” says Stephens.
Were things to ever get tense on the Senate floor, Senator Fanning says it was Senator Scott who could “bring everyone back down to earth.”
“I hope we take on that, as a mantra, that we can carry out the legacy of John Scott on the Senate floor,” says Fanning.
In a press release, Governor Henry McMaster said in part, “With over 30 years of service in the general assembly, he has a profound impact on Richland County and all of South Carolina. He will be deeply missed. May God bless him and his family.”
The governor is expected to have flags lowered at all state buildings to honor Scott’s legacy.
Visitation for Senator Scott will be held at Leevy’s Funeral Home (1831 Taylor Street) from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Friday, August 18th. A memorial service will be held at Bible Way Church of Atlas Road (2440 Atlas Road) on Saturday, August 19th at 11 a.m.
Scott most recently served on the Senate’s judiciary, medical affairs, and penology committees.
A special election to fill Scott’s seat will be held in the coming months.
“South Carolina has lost a great statesman in John W. Scott,” says Stephens.