Covering the Land of Lincoln

Garrett Scott Obituary (1944 – 2022) – Bloomington, IL

Garret Scott

June 6, 1944 – Aug 8, 2022

NORMAL – Garrett Scott, 78, of Normal, died at his home on Monday, August 8, 2022.

A public celebration of Garrett’s life will be announced for a later date this fall in Normal. A private inurnment will take place at Funks Grove Cemetery in McLean. Calvert & Metzler Memorial Home is handling arrangements.

Garrett Herschel Scott was born June 6, 1944, in Tuscola, IL, to Leslie Maxwell Scott and Verla Benscoter Scott. Garrett lived his entire life in Central Illinois, except for two years when his family lived in Guntersville, AL. He was said to have been the youngest Eagle Scout in Alabama the year he was awarded that badge. Garrett graduated from Monticello High School and came to Illinois State Normal University in 1962. Garrett graduated from Illinois State University in 1966, and later earned a master’s degree there as well.

Garrett volunteered in the spring of 1963, with the SCLC to register voters in Savannah, Georgia. Later that summer, he participated in the March on Washington and he was in the crowd for Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech. These experiences helped shape Garrett’ future advocacy for civil rights and inclusion.

Garrett was a speech pathologist and taught in Bloomington District 87 schools for 38 years. He retired in 2004.

Garrett served on the Normal Town Council for 23 years. His early advocacy for rails-to-trails development was instrumental in the development and construction of the Constitution Trail in Bloomington-Normal. The trail opened in 1989.

Garrett also once found himself on the losing end of a 5-2 council vote in 1996 that, if successful, would have extended protection to residents of normal against discrimination in housing, employment, and public accommodation on the basis of sexual orientation. The council subsequently voted to enact these protections in 2001. This issue was among the many on the council that he handled with thoughtfulness, fairness, and an eye toward what he thought was right for the future of his community.

Garrett was taught to play the game of chess at age four by his older brother Winfield. He continued to play for the rest of his life. Garrett helped start the Twin Cities Chess Club in 1967. He later took up scholastic chess coaching, and over four decades met with frequent success on the state and national level, helping guide teams in District 87, Unit 5, and at University High School. Garrett served as president of the Illinois Chess Association and as a delegate to the United States Chess Federation. He also served on the Executive Committee of US Chess. In 1994, US Chess named both Bloomington, Illinois and New York City as their “Chess Cities of the Year.” Garrett was given the Outstanding Career Achievement Award by US Chess in 2013, and received the Natalie W. Broughton Lifetime Achievement in Chess Award from the Illinois Chess Association in 2014.

Garrett was a charter member of the New Covenant Community in Normal and also a member of First Presbyterian Church in Normal.

Garrett married Sandra DeLannoy on February 28, 1967, at First Presbyterian Church in Normal. She preceded him in death on October 31, 2009.

Garrett was also preceded in death by his four siblings: Bonnilyn Burden (nee Scott), Leslie Maxwell “Max” Scott, Winfield Scott, and JD Scott.

Surviving are his children: Garrett (Betsy Davis) Scott of Ann Arbor, MI, Sarah (Andrew Cottonwood) Scott of Ellensburg, WA, and one granddaughter, Lucy Scott. He is also survived by beloved members of both the extended Scott and DeLannoy families.

When it came time for him to depart from any out-of-town visit with friends or family, Garrett could be counted on to rise from his chair and remark, “Well, I guess it’s time to get back to normal.” (This stands as a fair example of his humor).

Garrett Scott was very much a normal man. He was also an extraordinary man – an unpretentious man of wide reading with a generous sense of humor, an appreciation for language, deep engagement in his community, and kindness for anyone he met.

Memorial contributions may be made to New Covenant Community in Normal or to the Illinois Chess Association.;

Online condolences may be left at

Published by The Pantagraph on Aug. 12, 2022.

34465541-95D0-45B0-BEEB-B9E0361A315ATo plant trees in memory, please visit the Sympathy Store.

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