Obituary of Dennis John Scott
SCOTT, Dennis J., 83, of St. Petersburg, died Tuesday, March 21, 2023 at the Bay Pines VA Hospice. Born Oct. 8, 1939 in Milwaukee, he was the seventh of nine children of Esther (Quincey) and Wilbur O. Scott.
Dennis is survived by his wife of 61 years, Arlene (Ziarkowski) Scott; Milwaukee-area brothers Gerald (Pat) and Robert (Elaine) and sister-in-law Joan (Kolp) Scott; children Ken (Brian Bigler) of Mt. Horeb, Wis., Kevin (Amelia Carbajal Peralta) of Covington, Ky., Karin of St. Petersburg and son-in-law Alan Begley of Forest Hills, N.C.; grandchildren Kaley (Trent) Edington, Samuel and Khloe Scott, Keysi, Gamaliel (Amanda Espinosa Jesus Cruz) and Elmer Santos Carbajal; great-grandchildren Ashton Bentley, Angel Scott, Karsen Edington, Kayden Santos Espinosa and Kathleen Santos; and 35 nieces’ and nephews’ families across the country.
Daughter Kolleen Scott Begley went ahead Dec. 7 to welcome him into heaven. He was also predeceased by his parents and siblings Dolores Goodwin, Wilbur, Bernadette Pavlic, Ronald, Joan Gross, and Glen, foster brother James Rieder, and sister-in-law Camille (Ziarkowski) Nelson.
Baseball star Henry Aaron knew him from the 1957-58 season when Dennis played on the Milwaukee Braves’ farm team. After two years of active service in the Navy he and Arlene married, starting a family which relocated in 1963 to be near her mother in Florida. A rookie officer patrolling the Gulf beaches, he learned to negotiate when outnumbered at a football team’s rowdy pool party, and not to draw the gun when encountering the police chief’s daughter with boyfriend under a blanket after hours on the beach.
Dennis returned to Wisconsin in 1966 as a policeman in Kewaskum, where he and Arlene raised their now two sons and expanded the young family by two daughters. Later, as owner of Scott’s Texaco, he eagerly drove his wrecker to stranded motorists during snowstorms and sponsored and played on a team which twice traveled to the U.S. Slowpitch Softball Assn. championships. In 1983 the family returned to St. Pete where Dennis became maintenance engineer for Silor Optical, now Essilor. When off-shoring operations the company dispatched him to Mexico, Puerto Rico, and the Philippines to install equipment in new plants. He cultivated local workers he trained as enduring friends.
Dennis accumulated wealth, not money, plowing snow from rural neighbors’ driveways for free, trading car repairs for items, such as the home jukebox his kids enjoyed. Throughout life he gathered tools to serve as an affordable, even gratis, handyman, building not just clientele, but generations of friends. He was a proud Knight of Columbus.
A short visitation will take place at 12:30 pm Eastern time, Tues., Apr. 11 at the Cathedral of St. Jude, 5815 5th Ave. N., St. Petersburg, with the 1 pm funeral Mass live-streamed at stjudesp.org. A reception follows at the church. Inurnment is the following day at Bay Pines Cemetery. Tributes at AndersonMcQueen.com.To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Dennis Scott, please visit Tribute Store