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OBITUARY : Rev. David A. Scott, 73, Retired Church Official


GLENDALE — The Rev. David A. Scott, who joined the ministry at age 59 after jobs in social welfare, education and hospital administration and became head of the Methodist Church's Pasadena district, died Friday. He was 73.

Scott, who became assistant pastor at the North Glendale United Methodist Church after retirement, died at Huntington Memorial Hospital in Pasadena of cancer.

Scott was active as a Methodist lay person throughout his adult life. He became a minister in 1977, when the youngest of his three children was in college, his wife, Mary Jane, said. "He was driven towards the ministry all his life and it finally caught up with him," she said.

Once ordained, Scott spent several years as pastor for the Vermont Square United Methodist Church. In 1984, he was named supervisor of the United Methodist Church's Pasadena District, a position he held until he retired in 1988.

The Pasadena district includes more than 55 churches in Burbank, the Glendale area and the San Gabriel Valley. It extends as far north as Bishop.

After his retirement, he accepted a part-time job as an assistant pastor at North Glendale United Methodist.

Ruth Brager, a lay leader of the Glendale church, said Scott, who was black, wanted to work at the previously all white church to improve race relations. He also served on a Glendale committee to study the city's changing community.

"We learned a lot from him," Brager said. "He made our church a lot more accepting of all racial groups."

Scott was born in Aurora, Ill., in 1918. He attended Oklahoma's Langston University, then an all-black college, and spent four years in the military during World War II.

After leaving the service, Scott earned a master's degree in educational administration from the University of Illinois, and a law degree from Howard University in Washington, D.C.

During the 1950s and 1960s, he served as a property inspector for Los Angeles County's Bureau of Public Assistance, and then as the assistant superintendent for business at Compton's Enterprise School District.

Later, he moved his family to Milwaukee, where he directed an experimental health program and served as a hospital administrator. In 1975, he entered Garrett Evangelical Theological Seminary.

Throughout his career, Mary Jane Scott said, her husband "was concerned about the welfare of people and how he could use his talents to help them."

Besides his wife, he is survived by two sons, Daniel and Stephan; a daughter, Susan Porter, and 10 grandchildren.

Memorial services are scheduled at 12:30 p.m. Friday at the First United Methodist Church of Glendale.

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