Cover photo for Kevin W. Scott's Obituary
Kevin W. Scott Profile Photo

Kevin W. Scott

July 9, 1952 — July 21, 2022


Kevin W. Scott

SCOTT - William Kevin Sansom, age 70, of Reading, MA, passed away peacefully on July 21, ending his three year battle with cancer. Born in Kingston, Ontario on July 9, 1952, Kevin grew up largely overseas in a Canadian army family. His childhood was a self-described “carefree affair,” one that included skiing holidays in Austria, fantastic camping trips, listening to the Beatles and the Stones for the first time, as well as developing an English accent and a love of Blues music.

As life continued on he returned to Canada, in 1965, where at Rothesay Collegiate School he was seduced by the boarding school life: playing sports, skiing, winter dances with the nearby Netherwood girls, and the camaraderie of daily chapel attendance. However, school work was not a priority, and this brief, 2-year interlude from home life was done in by a Christmas report card, which noted that he wasn’t working hard enough, and that if his marks didn’t improve he would not be able to get into university.

On hearing this, his father decided to protect his investment, and Kevin found himself back home, attending Fredericton High School. He graduated in 1969, and received an Honors B.A. in History from the University of New Brunswick. His college years included time off for hitchhiking in California, working in a Manitoba nickel mine, tree planting, and skiing.

After a failed attempt to gain acceptance to medical school, more education followed. Having developed a love of scuba diving, and a renewed interest in the Bay of Fundy, he obtained a degree in ocean engineering from the Florida Institute of Technology, taught environmental science to undergraduates for a year, and finally secured some funding for ocean engineering graduate work at the University of Rhode Island.

Was there an overall plan? Certainly not initially, but at last one was beginning to take shape, and Kevin had had the foresight, at least, to promise his father that he would have a real job by the time he turned 35. As luck would have it, he was able to find gainful employment one year earlier, at Metcalf & Eddy in Wakefield, MA, in 1986.

The assignments were varied, and sometimes very interesting, with work in Puerto Rico, Wellfleet, New York City, and with many more agencies (MWRA, EPA), and points in between. However, for Kevin the real highlight of his 30-some-year career was the relationships developed with his colleagues. There were drastic changes in the way the company was run from year to year, and in the way business was conducted, but they still managed to have great fun.

In 1980, during a Halloween telephone call from Vancouver, while he was studying in Florida, he made the best and quickest decision of his life: accepting the proposal of marriage from Janet Forbes, thus ending what he referred to as a true long and winding romance. Their early years in Florida were true bliss.

Kevin leaves behind his wife of 41 years, Janet, two siblings Debbie and Rob, as well as two children, Alex and Robin; intelligent, quite different, but independent, and endlessly entertaining, both of them quickly followed in their mother’s footsteps to become intrepid travelers.

Although his July 2021 medical diagnosis of metastatic bone cancer was absolutely accurate, the prognosis was not, and Kevin considered this a great gift. He will be forever grateful for the extra months with family and friends.

He watched in wonder as Robin canceled and reorganized, without complaint, her wedding to Louis Chalmandrier, all while working remotely, from her childhood bedroom. With great technical and emotional support from Alex, her wedding took place in Paris, last September, with Janet by her side.

Readers note: The preceding life story was adapted from a series of audio recordings Kevin made during the last months of his life. His own sign-off is as follows:

“We all know how this strange, yet very natural, journey will end. I have learned much, and feel very lucky. Our family is eternally grateful for the oncology team at MGH. We can’t thank them enough.”

To honor Kevin’s memory, his family is holding a celebration of his life on Saturday July 30, from 2-5pm at 52 Pearl St, Reading, MA. All who knew Kevin are welcome. In lieu of flowers, we invite you to make a donation to Mass General Cancer Center.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Kevin W. Scott, please visit our flower store.

Past Services

Celebration of Life

Saturday, July 30, 2022

2:00 - 5:00 pm (Eastern time)

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