President Valerie Smith shared the following in a community message earlier today:
Our community lost one of its most highly-regarded and dedicated members when Raymond “Ray” Scott, longtime athletics equipment manager and No. 1 fan of the Garnet, died of cancer on Tues., Nov. 1. He was 59.
Ray served the Swarthmore community for 23 years and is remembered by colleagues and hundreds of student-athletes for his steady and good-natured presence, his enthusiastic and unfailing support, and the kindness and genuine care he extended on a daily basis to everyone around him.
“For Ray, Swarthmore student-athletes were like his children,” says Marian Ware Director of Athletics Adam Hertz. "Not one to complain, Ray was always the first person to find out how a student was doing and to offer them encouragement after a tough loss or to congratulate them after a win. Ray served generations of student-athletes and made a lasting impact on so many. He will be greatly missed by his Swarthmore family.”
“I remember my first official day of track season as a freshman,” says Becky Tang ’18, a computer science major from Columbus, Ohio. “I barely knew anyone, let alone had any friends on the team. I was treading nervously in front of the [equipment] cage and suddenly I heard someone say, ‘Now Becky, don't worry. We're gonna take real good care of you here.’ Ray already knew who I was and instantaneously helped me feel more comfortable and welcome.”
“He was such an integral part of my life as an athlete at Swarthmore,” says baseball pitcher Aidan Miller ’17, an economics and psychology major from Baltimore, Md. “It is definitely going to be hard to pass by the cage everyday knowing he's not there.”
Ray, of Eddystone, Pa., graduated from Chester High School and in 1982 earned a B.A. in history from Widener University, where he also served as a football manager and had a work-study job in the equipment room. After graduation, Ray held a series of inventory control positions at area businesses. He also maintained his connection at Widener by volunteering in their athletics center equipment room. In July 1993, when he saw an ad for an equipment and facilities manager position at the College, it seemed the perfect fit and he applied; he started at Swarthmore less than a month later.
"I started working for Ray in the equipment room my first week as a freshman,” says Assistant Women’s Soccer Coach Reba Magier ’16. “Ray was my No. 1 fan. He supported me through everything and always made sure I was living life to the fullest. After a long and crazy day of classes and schoolwork, Ray would greet you in the equipment room and make sure you had a smile on your face.”
“In the winter, I was working the concession stand at a basketball game,” remembers Sarah Girard ’19, a member of the women’s volleyball team from Woodbine, Md. “Ray came over and talked to me for half an hour about how much he loved the kids at Swat and how special we were to him. Even in his last few weeks working here, when we asked him how he was doing, he would say, ‘Better now that you guys are here. Have a fun time out there!’ He was one of the most genuine and loving people that I have met here and I will truly miss him.”
“Swarthmore was Ray's second family,” says Administrative Assistant Marian Fahy, who came to Swarthmore not long after Ray did. “He loved working with the student-athletes. They meant the world to him. When we talked last week, he asked me to get pictures of the Hall of Fame dinner so he could see Joko[tade Agunloye Greenberg ’01] and the 1996 Field Hockey team. He was sorry he wouldn't be able to attend.”
“Ray handed out more than bats and balls,” says Men’s Head Tennis Coach Mike Mullan. “He distributed good will, cheer, and genuine friendship to all of us.”
Ray was predeceased by his mother, the late Martha Scott. He is survived by his father John Scott (Lily), siblings Carol Burt, Bob Scott (Linda), Debi Richardson (Bob), Linda Scott, and Cindy Scott, and many loving nieces and nephews. A visitation will be held on Thurs., Nov. 10, from 9:30 to 10:45 a.m. at the Nolan-Fidale Funeral Home at 5980 Chichester Ave. in Aston, Pa., followed by a funeral service there at 11 a.m.