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Obituaries

Myron Scott, 91; Organized First Soap Box Derby

October 06, 1998

Myron Scott, an Ohio newspaper photographer who created the All-American Soap Box Derby and later worked at General Motors, where he coined the name "Corvette," has died. He was 91.

In 1933, Scott, a native of Camden, Ohio, was sent on assignment by the Dayton Daily News to do a photo essay on what children do for fun. In a town near Dayton, he photographed six young boys racing homemade cars down a hill.

Later that year, Scott, with the sponsorship of his paper, organized the first derby, which attracted 330 racers and 40,000 onlookers. The winner was a child whose car, sponsored by Evers Laundry, was made from a soapbox. The name stuck and in 1935, the All-American Soapbox Derby moved to Akron, where it came under the sponsorship of General Motors.

Scott soon joined GM as an assistant advertising director in charge of the race.

In 1953, Chevrolet executives wanted a name for a new sports car that would start with the letter "C" and not be the name of an animal. Scott looked through the dictionary, where he came up with corvette, a speedy pursuit ship in the British navy.

Scott is survived by his wife of 68 years, Clara Jane. Services will be held Wednesday in Kettering, Ohio.

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