Thomas Phillip Scotten
July 7, 1940 – June 8, 2018
Thomas Phillip Scotten passed away on June 8, 2018. Tom was born on July 7, 1940 in Indianapolis, IN to Hugh and Gladys Scotten. He was raised in Greenfield, IN on a farm that had been in the family since the 1860s. Upon graduating from Mount Comfort High School in 1958, he joined the Air Force Reserves.
Tom moved to Phoenix in 1960 in order to live with his parents and sister, Gayle, who had moved out west. He graduated with distinction from Arizona State University in 1964 with a Bachelor’s in education and an emphasis in history. The next year, Tom got a job at Honeywell’s Computer Operations Center and embarked on a lifelong career as a technical writer.
In the 1960s, Tom was also the lead singer of the Galahads, a popular comedy-folk group that performed throughout the Valley, including at Legend City and Filipo’s. The Galahads crossed paths with numerous rising stars, including Waylon Jennings. Tom continued his singing over the years, performing for friends and family as well as at ProMusica concerts. His parody songs in honor of friends were the highlight of many birthday parties.
Tom was an avid traveler, having visited over 30 countries, including the Soviet Union, Kenya, and China. Tom’s travels took him to Iran in 1976, where he met Azadeh Zand. They married, first in Iran and again in Phoenix, and lived happily together for 40 years. Eleven of those years were spent in Saudi Arabia, where Tom worked for Parsons.
Tom was a die-hard Phoenix Suns fan and was among the team’s first season ticket holders. When the Suns made their first NBA finals, Tom was off in Iran. But not to worry—his brother Myron called him from Phoenix and placed the receiver next to the radio for the entire game! When it came to food, Tom prized quantity over quality. Lobster was too much work for too little meat. Burgers were just fine. He made his way around town using the various fast food restaurants as his landmarks.
Tom returned to Phoenix for good in 1995. His love of music, genealogy, and videography led him to create a new business, Scotten’s Family Tree Video, which brought people’s pasts alive through music videos of old family photos.
Tom led a happy, fulfilling life. He had deep empathy for others and a great sense of humor. He was loved by all who met him. Tom is survived by his wife Azy; sons Ali and Shannon; sister Gayle Crews; and many loving nieces, nephews, and friends. We know that Tom is now sitting somewhere, laughing at My Cousin Vinny and enjoying an enormous banana split. We love you, Tommy Boy!
A memorial will be held on July 7. Please contact Ali at 773-573-8761 for further information. In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to ProMusica Arizona at www.pmaz.org.
Thomas Phillip Scotten
July 1, 2018
From a very young age, around 3 or so maybe just after birth my second famiy had always been another az fam while living abroad, many great memories were made while being privileged enough to have known shannon, Ali, tom and azy... "uncle tom", also was seen much like a fatherfigure to myself as shannyboy and Alibaba were brothers and azy was like another mother. I remember tom at times being so fun and charismatic, doaning wigs and being "spunky" with voices, or in song... and of course the many times being his extremely fun self during Scouts. Tom is always with my thoughts fondly in my memories, true I wish that i had been around a great deal more times than I had, that there could have been more time spent basking in the cherished relationship that I had with tom and his family. But surpassed these memories I loved the family feeling that tom always gave me. He's forever in my heart and on my mind, Heaven just welcomed another great angel when tom had left us, I now can only await the day til we meet again. I can hear Tom's wonderful vocals now as he sings his awesome songs of joy and fun, future and past. For now I can only await the day to give him a huge hug again and tell him he's loved. He always will be, as he always was uncle tom!
June 26, 2018
I first met Tom during my early days of Honeywell 40 years ago, and have had the honor of calling Tom my friend ever since. Whether it was his ROAD show, or a desert campfire, or as T-Ball coach to his kids, it was a pleasure to work and hang with Tom. He always spoke kind words and had an ever present smile. All my fond memories while working for Parsons included Tom and his family. We will all miss Tom.
June 26, 2018
To Azy, Ali and Shannon. Tom was Ray's best friend. He was the Best Man at our wedding . Ray and Tom called each other on their birthdays. Ray's being in March, Tom called me, since Ray's passing. So very kind ! I send my love. Donna and "Heavenly " Ray