Cross with white flame behind it

First United Methodist Church

Phyllis Scott

Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “It is not the length of life, but the depth of life”.  Phyllis Scott was blessed to have both.   

Phyllis Marguerite Sanderson Scott, of Peterborough, NH, died peacefully on April 19, 2023, surrounded by her family and loved ones.  She was three weeks shy of her 93rd birthday.

Phyllis was born in Portsmouth, New Hampshire to Doris Marguerite Yeaton and Phillip Hadley Sanderson on May 15, 1930.  She and her late sister, Ruth Shirley Sanderson Beane, grew up in a loving extended family during the depression.  Her childhood is full of vivid stories, from riding her bicycle to Wallis Sands Beach, to Sunday night family hymn-sings, and nurturing a Victory Garden with her uncle.

Phyllis graduated from Portsmouth High School, Colby-Sawyer College, and the University of New Hampshire, where she majored in music.  Her instrument was the clarinet, and she taught music in Syracuse and the Monadnock region for many years.

Phyllis was married to the late John (Skip) Lawrence Scott in 1952 in Portsmouth.  Not long after their marriage, Phyllis and Skip moved to New York State, where they lived in North Syracuse until 1972.   They returned to New Hampshire, to run the Peterborough radio stations WSCV and WSLE.  In addition to her many roles with the radio stations and as a teacher, Phyllis was active with her church and many local charities.

Her love of family was Phyllis’ defining quality.  She loved her children, Laurie Scott (Cathy), Steven Scott (Karin), and Elaine Haber (Steve), and her grandchildren John Scott-Martin (Caroline), Lucas Scott-Martin (Shabeen), Devin Barrass (Nick), Samuel Haber (Mollie), Justin Haber (Chelsea), and Taylor-Jae Scott.   She was especially thrilled when her great grand-daughter Amelia Barrass was born in 2020.

Phyllis and her sister created a family camp, called Scobea Island, on the St Lawrence River in Southern Ontario, which four generations of cousins, siblings and friends have enjoyed.  On its 50th anniversary, Phyllis paid tribute to the many years of memories Scobea brought to her family.

She also loved the Red Sox, Kimball’s ice cream, a good canasta or bridge game, and singing.  She was a member of a choir or chorus from age 10 until only recently, including the Monadnock Chorus and the Union Congregational Church choir.  She played clarinet with the Temple Band for many years.

Phyllis was pre-deceased by her husband John, her son David, her sister Shirley, her niece Ruth Sigg and nephew Roger Beane, and her great niece Erin Frayne.

A memorial service and celebration of Phyllis’s life will be held at the Union Congregational Church in Peterborough at a time when all family can be present.  An announcement will be made in the summer.

Phyllis was active in many nonprofit organizations, and one of her favorites was the Monday Night Community Suppers at her church, where she served as a volunteer cook for many years.   In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made in Phyllis’ name to The Monday Night Suppers at Union Congregational Church, 33 Concord Street, Peterborough, NH 03458.  Checks may be made out to Union Congregational Church with “Monday Night Suppers” in the memo.

The family wishes to thank the staff of the Scott-Farrar community and Monadnock Community Hospital, for their thoughtful care.   In addition, we are grateful to her circle of friends and family, including Holly and Dick Sanders, Carol and Michael Crocker, Thalia Ravlin, and her treasured aide Maria Towers, who were a devoted and constant care team amid her changing health needs.

At her request, Phyllis was cremated and her ashes will be interred at the South Street cemetery in Portsmouth, NH, in the St. Lawrence River, and with one last ride of the waves at Wallis Sands Beach.

May her memory be a blessing to all who knew and loved her.