Obituary: Scott, Harmon Putnam
SCOTT, Harmon Putnam
Harmon passed peacefully on October 27, 2012 at Rockwood at Hawthorne in Spokane, Washington at the age of 90. He was born January 30, 1922 at Arco, Idaho. The oldest of six children, his parents were Harvey and Lillie May (Pittman) Scott.
Harmon’s father, Harvey Scott, a Whitman County pioneer, was born in 1886, before Washington became a state. Both of Harvey’s parents, Harmon Scott, Sr., and Margaret Seat Scott came with their parents over the Oregon Trail after the Civil War. Harvey Scott worked as a plumber in the Coeur d’Alene area and Harmon’s mother, May Pittman graduated from Cheney Normal, and was a teacher before her marriage.
Harmon grew up in western Montana (Polson, Missoula, Belgrade) and northern Idaho, graduating from Post Falls High School in 1940. He enjoyed playing tennis and baseball and often talked about a favorite teacher, George Oliver Kildow, who taught Chemistry and was later President of North Idaho Junior College in Coeur d’Alene.
He joined Western Electic, part of the Bell System, as an installer of telephone central office communications equipment in August 1940. After two years of traveling throughout Washington and Oregon, he joined the Enlisted Reserve Corps as an engineer, and attended Washington State College in Pullman from September 1942 until April 1943 when he was called into active service.
Upon completion of Basic Training in Atlantic City, NJ, he was transferred to Camp Crowder, MO for specialized Signal Corps training. Assigned to a Signal Battalion, he shipped from San Francisco in spring of 1944 to the South Pacific.
After Oro Bay and Hollandia in New Guinea, he installed and operated communications equipment for the Far Eastern Air Force on Leyte, Samar and Luzon in the Philippines, Okinawa and at Yokohama and Tokyo before returning to Seattle. He was discharged Christmas Day 1945 as Technician Fourth Grade, 1716th Signal Service Battalion Aviation.
He then returned to Western Electric, married Betty Graven of Richland, Oregon, on June 15, 1946 in Spokane, WA and they established their first home in Yakima. The family moved many times throughout his 36 working years, living in Seattle, Bellevue, WA; Glen Rock, NJ; San Jose, CA. He retired in July 1976 as Department Chief, Regional Controller’s Organization, Pacific Regional Headquarters at Sunnyvale, CA and moved to Port Angeles; Lake Stevens; then in 1992 after the death of his daughter’s husband, David Lilles, they moved to Spokane, WA.
Harmon was a passionate fly fisherman. He traveled throughout the Pacific Northwest, northern California, western Canada, and the eastern Maritime provinces. He belonged to several outdoor sportsman clubs and fishing and fly-tying to anyone interested (San Jose, CA; Port Angeles, Lake Stevens, and Spokane, WA). He donated his collection of periodicals and supplies to Spokane Fly Fishers when he moved to Hawthorne.
Another hobby was his love of hunting with his beloved dogs; Lucky, Britt, and Putt. The family enjoyed camping and traveling and visited many State and National Parks in the United States and Canda. He and Betty particularly enjoyed traveling to Alaska.
He also enjoyed competitive tennis, ping-pong, and horseshoes. He encouraged neighborhood children to play tennis and would give them rackets.
When he and Betty moved to Rockwood at Hawthorne, he liked to make connections to other residents’ genealogies and would tell them how they were related. He traveled to local archives and cemeteries with his daughter and son, research his family.
He is survived by his wife of sixty-six years, Betty Scott of Spokane; his sister Ruthanne Warren (Don), Redmond, WA; brother Don Scott (Joyce), Sparta, NJ; brother Bob Scott (Mary), Summerville, SC. He was preceded in death by a sister Carol Stade, Altoona, IA; and a brother Les Scott, Hayden, ID.
Harmon and Betty have a daughter Linda Lilles (late David), Spokane; son Ronald Scott (Linda), Oroville, CA; grandchildren: Alex Lilles, Pleasant Hill, CA; Aimee Lilles (Craig Zeff), Sacramento, CA; Milena Lilles, (San Mateo, CA; Joe Scott, Oroville, CA. He also has cousins: Donna Reser (Bob), Spokane and Rita Miller (Darrell), Post Falls, ID and numerous nephews and nieces.
The family is extremely appreciative of the compassionate care from the staff at Rockwood at Hawthorne where Harmon resided the last nine years.
If desired memorials may be made to the Lasa Kaul Foundation at Hawthorne (funds further education for care giving staff); SpokAnimal, or a charity of your choice.
A Memorial of Harmon’s life will be held at Rockwood at Hawthorne, in the Upper Lounge, Saturday, November 3rd 2012 at 10:30 A.M., 101 E. Hawthorne Road, Spokane, WA 99218. Inurnment will take place at Eagle Valley Cemetery, Richland, Oregon. Please visit Harmon’s tribute and leave a condolence at www.hennesseyfuneralhomes.com. Arrangements have been entrusted to: