Garrett’s Music Center | Marietta, OH Patch

Garrett’s Music Center | Marietta, OH Patch

MARIETTA, OH — Garrett Scott was the Teen Coordinator at the Boys & Girls Club of Washington County. His sudden death in May shocked the entire community. He was only 25-years-old but apparently had an undiagnosed heart condition. Those that knew him only had good things to say about him. He had been with the Boys & Girls Club since he graduated from Marietta High School in 2014. He had also been a volunteer firefighter and played drums for a church band.

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Rebecca Johnson is the Executive Director and CEO of the Washington County B&G Club. She said they are looking for a way to honor Garrett’s memory, and she’s hoping they can do that by building a music center in his honor. “He was a musician, he plays drums, played guitar, he knew quite a few instruments.” Through his teen program, he worked with a lot of kids, helping them read and play music.

She said Garrett really wanted the B&G Club to have a music center for the kids. “He had this dream to do this. The kids still want it, the community still wants it, the board is definitely behind it.” They were looking at putting it upstairs, but Johnson said there are issues with that. “We would have to have a fire exit installed on the second floor. That’s kind of cost-prohibitive.” She said ideally they would get a separate property specifically for the B&G Club Music Program. “We have our eyes on a couple of different places.”

Nothing is in stone as far as this project is concerned, but preliminary efforts are underway. They’ve been fundraising. “When he passed away his family asked for donations to the B&G Club. And we’ve raised over $8,000.”

She said this will be used as seed money towards Garrett’s dream of creating a B&G Club Music Center. “This is not official, but in meetings, the board has talked about how to best honor Garrett.” She said it’s very possible if they get this music center put together, they will dedicate it to Garrett.

Calaya Rake is the new Teen Coordinator for the Marietta location of the Washington County B&G Club. She says a music center would have been his baby, so the idea of a music center in Garrett’s honor warms her heart. “I’m a musician. That’s part of why me and Garrett were so close at the time. Anything music-related that he wanted to do I was always there helping him.”

She said his passing was really difficult for everyone. “We still have kids that come up and are still missing him.” Rake says the question of how everyone is taking it is hard to answer. “That’s kind of an ongoing question. We’re still taking it in stride. Each day is different and some days are harder than others, but we’re doing pretty well.”

Rake actually went to college for music and is trying to pick up where Garrett was, and continue teaching music to children. “I’m hoping we can keep that passion he had for music going with the kids.”

Johnson said she wants the music center to be kid-centric. “So what the kids are interested in, but also what we can get from people donating back to us.” Johnson pictures a lot of percussion and stringed instruments. “Also the music production side. Garrett was very involved with his Apple computer.” She said they’d also like to get their hands on mixing boards and music production software. Anyone who wants to make a financial donation to help the B&G Club can do so by clicking here. Anyone interested in donating a musical instrument can do so by clicking here.

The B&G Club is currently working on completely redoing its gymnasium. This is a massive undertaking that should be completed later this year. “I’m hoping to make a good run on fundraising and hopefully be able to get set plans in place for upstairs or really have a piece of property that’s ADA compliant.”

Johnson believes this center would help them with their mission of reaching as many kids as possible. “Music is a way to reach some kids that might learn differently. Sometimes our non-traditional kids who don’t work in school too well are artistic and musically inclined.”

She hopes this will be a powerful tool in their arsenal to help keep kids on the right track, being safe, monitored, and not getting into trouble. “There are some people who are absolutely talented. They can just pick up an instrument, and I feel Garrett was that way too.” She said he used music as a common language to connect to kids, and hopefully, they can do more of that with a dedicated music center.

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