Jon Scott Bailly, 66

Nov 13, 2012

Swanville — Jon Scott Bailly, 66, died at home suddenly, but peacefully, Nov. 7, 2012. He was born Feb. 10, 1946, in Minneapolis, a son of Helen (Aasen) and Charles E. Bailly. After graduating from Lawrence University with a bachelor’s degree in psychology in 1968, Scott volunteered in VISTA in West Virginia, where he met Debbie Johnston, also a VISTA volunteer, whom he married in 1971.

A spiritually peaceful man, he was granted conscientious objector status during the Vietnam War. Shortly after Scott graduated from the Yale University Physician’s Assistant Program, they moved to Maine from Connecticut, seeking a slower pace and the great outdoors. Scott was employed as a PA at the Arthur Jewell Health Center, and then at Seaport Family Practice.

Passionate about protecting the environment, Scott could be an icon of reduce/reuse/recycle, to the extent of hitchhiking to Belfast by day or night, sometimes in the rain, rather than “waste” fuel in his 50-mile-per-gallon auto. He wouldn’t dream of driving the four miles round-trip to the local grocery, but often combined a visit there with his nearly daily 5 1/2-mile walk “around the block.” With a philosophy of “less is better,” Scott had little interest in material possessions. He would sit quietly for hours observing and communing with nature, listening to birdsong or investigating an interesting insect.

He joyously lent his bass voice to the Unitarian Universalist Church choir, Heartsong, and the Pen Bay Singers, and he reaped great enjoyment working out songs on guitar and piano. He and Debbie loved camping, snorkeling and adventuring in exotic locales. Even though he was a quiet, reflective soul, comfortable with solitude, he struck up conversations with friends and strangers, readily able to reach meaningful levels of dialogue. Curious about life, he loved learning – reading about consciousness or the life of dirt and talking with rangers when camping – and shared his knowledge enthusiastically. He was kind. He was authentic. He could show tears without shame. He was wondrously content with his life.

Scott will be greatly missed by family: his soulmate, Deborah (Johnston) Bailly; a sister, Teryl Lawson, and her husband, John; three brothers, Richard Bailly and his wife, Margie, David and his wife, Jan, and Charles; a brother-in-law, Jack Brunt; and nine nieces and nephews.

He was predeceased by his parents.

A celebration of his life will be held this winter. Donations in his memory may be made to the Maine chapter of The Nature Conservancy: TNC, 4245 N. Fairfax Dr., Ste. 100, Arlington, VA 22203 or

Arrangements are with Riposta Funeral Home 182 Waldo Ave., Belfast

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