In his best-selling memoir Tuesdays with Morrie, author Mitch Albom writes about a series of visits he made to his professor, Morrie Schwartz, as he gradually died from Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS). Albom shares many life lessons he learned from his mentor and friend.
Our Community Bible Study Men’s Group in Trussville had a similar experience when we sat with Wayne Scott on many Friday mornings to give his wife, Billie, a break to run errands. Brother Wayne passed away on Saturday, April 16, after an extended illness. He was a retired pastor and has actively participated in our small group for the past eight years.
I came up with the “phone a friend” nickname for Brother Wayne. The idea of “phone a friend” came from the Who Wants to be a Millionaire game show. When a contestant needed help, they could call someone for assistance. It wasn’t uncommon for one of our men to look over at Brother Wayne and ask, “What do you think about that?” His answers were always thought-provoking and interesting. On Easter Sunday morning, the day after Brother Wayne passed, I couldn’t help but think that he was in Heaven talking to Jesus and getting answers to all those crazy “phone a friend” questions we’ve been asking over the years.
As much time as I’ve spent with Wayne over the years, I didn’t know that he was Dr. Wayne Scott and had retired from the Army as a lieutenant colonel. He was such a humble man that he never introduced himself by a title. Brother Wayne leaves a tremendous legacy as a true servant leader, husband to Billie for 61 years, father, mentor, and friend.
I looked forward to my time with Brother Wayne and learned so much from him in our discussions. When I had prostate cancer six years ago, Wayne told me that he had previously had prostate cancer and would talk about anything I wanted to discuss. His wisdom meant so much to me, and I’ve tried to pay that forward.
I am a better person because of my friendship with Wayne and Billie Scott. We will all miss Brother Wayne. I look forward to seeing you again, my friend!