LAKE OSWEGO — John Joseph Scotty, a retired high school teacher and coach, died Dec. 27 at his home after complications from lymphoma. He was 78. There will be a rosary at 10 a.m. on Saturday, Jan. 7, at Our Lady of the Lake Church, 790 A Ave., Lake Oswego.
Mr. Scotty was born Feb. 21, 1938, in Chicago, Ill. He graduated from St. Ignatius High School, received his bachelor’s degree in English from Loyola University, and his master’s degree from Chicago State. John met his first wife Kathleen Bray in the Windy City and the two married in 1964 and started a family.
He began his teaching career at South Shore High School in Chicago before moving his family to Lake Oswego in 1969. He taught English and coached basketball and football at Lake Oswego High School for 27 years, where he made a positive and lasting impact on many students and athletes. His holiday rum balls, joyful singing, and occasional hijinks left many memories with the faculty there as well. He and his wife Kathy raised four children, enjoyed a happy and active life and were a staple in the Lake Oswego community. He retired in 1996 to help care for Kathy who passed away from cancer later that year.
After spending a few years of retirement with friends and family, and traveling to places like Hawaii, Japan, Saipan and Ireland, John was fortunate to find love again and married Christine Peterson in 2000, thereby enriching his family with three stepchildren. John and Chris continued to travel, enjoying trips with family and friends to places like Hawaii, Montana, Illinois and various west coast destinations. Though a stroke in 2004 slowed John down a bit, he never lost his love for life, family and fun.
John was a disciplined teacher and demanding coach, who brought out the best in everyone. He was also an avid gardener who grew all the fruits and vegetables his garden would support. His green thumb extended to the more than 100 varieties of roses he took pride in cultivating.
What family and friends closest to him will always remember, treasure and miss are his laughter, his amazing singing voice, his quick wit, his mischievous smile, and his own personal Scotty language and idioms (Yactum Squeegie!, Mohuncher, Jeepers Creepers, Oh boy, oh boy, oh boy). He was a brilliant man who could find common ground with anyone, be it discussing Russian literature or the poetry of James Joyce…or instigating “adventures” of dubious legality. He thus enjoyed loyal and lifelong friendships with a diverse and fun-loving group of people.
The final days of his life were spent in the company of his family and friends. He passed away with his wife Chris and daughters Laura, Amy and Mary at his side.
He was preceded in death by his wife, Kathleen Bray, his brother, Jim Scotty, and his sister, Pat Geoghegan.
He is survived by his wife, Chris; children Michael (Martha), Laura, Amy (Greg), Mary (Jennie); stepchildren, Jennifer (Ty), Jonathan (Melanie), Joann (Matt); seven grandchildren; sister, Sharon (Paul); and numerous nephews, nieces, cousins and friends.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Kaiser Hospice or St Vincent DePaul chapter at Our Lady of the Lake.