October 12, 2020
NCGA Mourns the Loss of Past President Gordon Scott
Scotty graduated from Kingsburg High School in 1940. That is where he met his future wife, Dorothy Jean Danielson. Upon turning 18 Scotty enlisted in the United States Navy. His first ship assignment was on the USS Arizona. He was transferred to the aircraft carrier USS Lexington prior to the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor. On December 7, 1941, the Lexington was out to sea and missed being placed in harms way when its home base was attacked. However, a close call ensued. On May 8, 1942, the Lexington was sunk in the Battle of the Coral Sea. When the order came, Scotty and his fellow seamen abandoned ship by jumping into the waters. 216 crewmen lost their lives.
Before being assigned to his next ship, Scotty was furloughed briefly and returned to Kingsburg. At that time, the Navy did not reveal the sinking of the Lexington, so Scotty could not tell a soul. Imagine how difficult that must have been.
Thereafter Scotty served on the USS Suwanee. As luck would have it, he was on furlough and had come to Kingsburg to marry his sweetheart, Dorothy Jean Danielson, when his former ship was devastated by Japanese warplanes and kamikaze fighters. The ship was not sunk, but lost 107 crewmen, with another 160 seriously wounded. The date they were married was October 28, 1944. Scotty and his new wife were stationed in Corpus Christi, Texas until his discharge from the Navy in 1945. In total Scotty served 30 years in the military;six active duty and 24 years as a member of the Naval Reserves.
The year 1945 also brought the couple their firstborn son, Fredrick. After discharge from the Navy Scotty, Dorothy and Fred came back to Kingsburg to start their post-war life. They built their house on the corner of 16th and Ventura and lived in it until moving to Monterey, Ca. One year to the day after Fred was born, in 1946, their daughter, Peggy, arrived. Scotty took up employment at his father-in-law’s business, Danielson’s Auto Supply and Sporting Goods. After his father-in-law, Fred Danielson passed away, Scotty became the owner. He retired gradually in the early eighties, turning over the operation of the business to his son-in-law, David Meyer.
Over the years, Scotty and his wife Dorothy had many interests. They traveled extensively. They also became accomplished skeet shooters. But dearest to Scotty’s heart was the game of golf. He was one of the original members of the Kings River Golf and Country Club and served as its president. Because of his love of the game, he became a member of the board of directors of the Northern California Golf Association. He also served as president of NCGA. After retirement he and Dorothy purchased a condominium on 17 Mile Drive in Monterey. This was his paradise. He became a member of both Spyglass Country Club and Monterey Golf and Country Club. As a board member of the Northern California Golf Association, he was able to play at many more golf courses, including Poppy Hills, which was owned by the association. Imagine having three world-class golf courses to choose from on any given day. None of them more than five minutes from home.
Scotty eventually became president of the Northern California Golf Association. He played in the A T & T Golf Tournament twice. This gave him a chance to play with top pros, but also with well-known amateurs. One year he played with Charles Shultz, author of the Peanuts comic strip. He took his grandson, Christopher Meyer as his caddy. Pretty heady stuff for a teenager to be walking the famous Pebble Beach Resort Golf Course with golfing elites and celebrities, and of course with his grandpa.
In 2014, at the age of 91, Scotty was featured on Paul Loeffler’s Hometown Heroes radio program and was honored to be part of the Central Valley Honor Flight program where he expressed such elation at seeing thousands of people, including his family and friends, waiting for their return to Fresno.
A few years after Dorothy passed, Scotty decided it was time to come home to Kingsburg. For a number of years, he lived by himself, but as age made its presence known, he decided to take up residence at the California Veterans Home in Fresno, Ca. He enjoyed the company of his fellow veterans, and had access to good food, entertainment, all the assistance he would need. He was quite happy there. Scotty would drive to Kingsburg for services at Kingsburg Community Church, and several times a week to have coffee with the boys at McDonald’s. He renewed his driver’s license at age 95!
Scotty was predeceased by his father (Robert) and mother, Anna (nee Sjostrand), brothers James, and Robert, as well as a sister Margaret Bopp, and his son Fredrick. He is survived by his daughter, Peggy (husband David) of Kingsburg. Three grandsons, Danny Scott of San Francisco, Eric Scott of Visalia, and Christopher Meyer of Selma, as well as his daughter in law, Nancy (nee Pacheco) of Visalia. Scotty also is survived by two great grandchildren, Alex and Allison of Kingsburg.
Memorial donations in lieu of flowers may be sent to The Kingsburg Historical Society, Box 282, Kingsburg, Ca. 93631