Don Scott passed away peacefully last week in Arizona after a short illness. While he spent winters there, playing with the Mesa Arizona Concert Band, he summered in Bayfield and has been with The Goderich Laketown Band since retiring here in 2005. He was a valued member of our band and a great supporter, volunteering his services whenever and where ever needed. Several of the musical selections we play today are due to donations made by Don.
Don’s musical career started when he was 5 years old, playing trumpet in The London Police Boys Junior Band. As he grew older, he graduated to The London Police Boys Senior Band then eventually created The Don Scott Knickerbockers, a 12 piece dance band. At that time, he played trumpet and stringed bass, spending Friday nights with the band playing on the London radio station CKSL. In his late teens, he and his band were playing the dance halls up and down the Lake Huron shoreline, sometimes filling in gaps when the visiting big bands of that time were needing extra musicians. During these London years, he even managed to squeeze in playing for the RCR Band.
A few years later, married and with a young family in Kitchener, he formed the Dutch Boy Cadets Drum and Bugle Corp so his sons could have the same great musical experiences he had as a child. They played and competed in Ontario, Quebec, and several of the eastern states. This band of 120 musicians, dressed up in lederhosen, became a regular part of the annual Kitchener Oktoberfest parades. Don arranged a 10 day tour through Germany, where the band performed at the Munich Oktoberfest celebrations, then later at the Canadian Armed Forces bases in Lahr, and Baden Baden.
Don played trumpet with the Waterloo Regional Police Band for over 10 years, then in 1997 joined the Ayr-Paris band. He was with them for another 10 years before retiring and moving to Bayfield. Even with the move, for the first two years he continued to commute to Ayr for practices and performances. He toured with the Ayr-Paris Band, visiting England and Europe (Don is in the top row second from the left on the steps of the cathedral in Prague).
He was the type of person who felt the glass was always half full. Nothing stopped him…he was a “can do” kind of guy. If there wasn’t a band somewhere he could join, he made one up. I don’t believe there ever was a time when Don wasn’t in a band. I’m sure that even now, Don is up there playing his trumpet in the “Holy Trinity Band”.