WACO, TEXAS — Richard E. Scott, 74, former President and CEO of Hillcrest Health System, went home to be with his Heavenly Father Friday, January 20, 2012, after a courageous battle with Parkinson's Disease. Graveside services will be 10:00 a.m., Monday, January 23, at Oakwood Cemetery, followed by funeral services celebrating his life 11:30 a.m., at First Baptist Church, Waco with the Rev. Chaplain Curtis Holland and the Rev. Dr. Matt Snowden officiating. Visitation will be 6 to 8 p.m., Sunday, January 22, at Wilkirson-Hatch-Bailey Funeral Home Garden Room, 6101 Bosque Blvd, Waco.
Richard Scott was born Oct. 3, 1937, in St. Louis, Missouri, to Earl Ray and Celeste Irene Scott. He graduated from Farmington High School in 1957. He married his childhood friend, Carol Lou Jenkins, in 1960 and moved to Waco to attend Baylor University. He graduated from Baylor with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Religion and Business. He later earned his Master of Science degree in Health Care Administration from Trinity University in San Antonio and completed his health care administration residency at Scott & White Clinic in Temple.
In 1961, Richard began working for Hillcrest Hospital as a cashier/admissions officer, thus beginning a 42-year career at Hillcrest, which included being a business office manager, vice president, executive vice president and then president and chief executive officer of Hillcrest Health Systems until his retirement in 2002. To know Richard was to know he had a love and passion for Hillcrest, and outstanding healthcare for the people of Waco. He was instrumental in the formation of various specialty services, like the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, a Level II trauma center, In-patient Rehabilitation, Hospice, and Hillcrest Family Health Centers. He considered Hillcrest Associates as an extension of his family and gave his lifelong career to bettering the institution in delivering high-quality healthcare to all residents of Central Texas. Employee photographs adorned the office wall behind his desk and in gold lettered inscription read, “I stand behind these people and these people stand behind me.” Even during his last days he maintained his sense of humor and was able to recall the names of those who had worked for Hillcrest.
Community involvement was extremely important to Richard, who felt a passion to serve his community through various nonprofit boards and church leadership positions. During his career, he served on many boards including: Greater Waco Chamber of Commerce chairman of the board; president of the Rotary Club of Waco; president of the board of the Dr. Pepper Museum & Education Foundation; chairman of the board of the Waco Business League; American Cancer Society medical advisory board; president of the board of the Waco Family Practice Foundation; chairman of the board of Leadership Waco; president of the United Way of Waco McLennan County; president of the Baptist Healthcare Association; VHA Southwest chairman of the board; Texas Hospital Association board member; Arthritis Foundation advisory committee; WISD Adopt-A-School advisory board member; and Waco Big 12 Steering Committee.
Richard always said his first commitment in life was to God. He was never shy about professing his faith to all who met him and tried to spread the joy of Christ to all the lives he touched. Richard felt a special devotion to being involved in his church. Richard served as chairman of the deacons at Highland Baptist Church and then Chairman of the board and deacon chair at First Baptist Church Waco.
He is preceded in death by his parents; and many aunts and uncles.
He is survived by his beloved wife of 51 years, Carol; his two children, daughter, Suzanne Abbe and husband, Rick of Waco; and son, Dr. Richard E. Scott, Jr. and wife Sarah, of Waco; his grandchildren, Heather McCall and husband, Andrew, Haylee, Hannah, and Hunter Abbe, and Warner, Ethan, and Julia Scott; and by his brother, Earl Roger Scott and wife, Helen of New Braunfels; and many nieces and nephews.
Pallbearers will be Warner Scott, Ethan Scott, Hunter Abbe, Andrew McCall, Jordan Beard, and Devon McPherson.
Despite his many community activities, Richard always made time for his family - especially his grandchildren. He loved being a grandfather or G.P. as they called him. He thoroughly enjoyed attending their many sports and extracurricular activities. After his retirement one of his favorite activities was to host G.P. days where he would treat each individual grandchild to a special day for lunch and their favorite activity.
Richard's family is especially grateful for the exceptional medical care he received from all his physicians, Hillcrest associates, Hospice providers, and especially “Visiting Angel,” Dora Montgomery and the 6th Floor nursing staff in his last days.
He leaves behind his devoted wife, life-long friend, help-mate, strongest advocate, and most faithful caregiver who lovingly served him by providing for his every need during his last years as he fought Parkinson's' Disease.
Memorials may be made to Hillcrest Office of Development, 100 Hillcrest Medical Blvd., Waco, TX 76712 or First Baptist Waco Church Foundation 500 Webster, Waco, TX 76706.
The family invites you to leave a message or memory in our "Memorial Guestbook" at www.WilkirsonHatchBailey.com.