Charismatic, athletic, loving, funny, strong
People naturally gravitated to Scott. He made friends easily and had the “gift of gab.” Scott could engage in deep intuitive conversations or sit quietly, listen attentively and give genuine advice. His mother, Debbie, said, “He was a respectful, loving, and kind son.” ‘He never disrespected our family, even in the depths of his disease.’
Scott loved sports and excelled in each one he played. He was especially gifted in baseball, which he started when he was six and continued into college and beyond. He was a left-handed pitcher, started every game, and was voted the most valuable player on his high school team. On the traveling team, he held the record for the most home runs and his team won divisional championships. In his first year of college, he earned a spot on the Penn State baseball team.
As a kid, Scott loved swimming in the pool and riding through the neighborhood with his friends and brother Brendan as they pretended to be in covert military operations. The roller hockey court they set up on the street got lots of use by Scott, Brendan, and the neighborhood kids. In summer, Scott went to sports camp, and the brothers went to Camp Pinewood in North Carolina together. Every year, the family took a spring vacation to Colorado for skiing, where Scott and his brother showed off the skills they learned in ski school. The family spent Jewish holidays in Pennsylvania and time with Ohio cousins at Cedar Point Amusement Park and again at Christmas.
As the boys got older, they worked out together at the gym. Brendan said, “Scott gave me something to work toward to grow bigger and stronger.” What he misses most without Scott are the things that can never be replaced–the silly jokes, shared shenanigans, playing and watching sports together, and having fun.
Scott was proud of attending Penn State, especially since his dad was an alum and they enjoyed going to football games there throughout the years. Scott’s long-term plans included being a sports announcer. He had the unique deep, raspy voice that was perfect for it, and he always had something to say. Active addiction set him back in his plans. He had problems focusing and sometimes alienated himself from friends and family members. During those times, he could be manipulative and untrustworthy. But in treatment, he earned the name “The Pied Piper of Rehab,” for his success in encouraging people to stay when they wanted to give up. The staff at the facility said they could always count on Scott and were honored to know him.
His mom said Scott’s addiction deeply affected her life. There were endless nights of worry and fear that Scott would harm himself. She attended weekly support meetings and found solace in sharing her story with other parents. Debbie misses his affection for her, his bear hugs, and making his favorite dish, chicken and dumplings. She still attends meetings and has deep compassion for those who suffer from SUD, their family and friends. Debbie said, “I saw Scott go through so much pain and suffering; there are treatment options for this disease. I want to bring awareness to SUD to help others; no one should suffer.”
Scott’s mother, Debbie Simon, provided the information for this narrative.
December 27, 1988-September 23, 2018
Age 29-Lived with the disease of addiction 9 years