Giving of himself also enriches former resident

Published 10:27 am Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Prison gives a man a lot of time to reflect on his life. It’s where Henry Scott said he spent many years doing just that after he was sentenced for selling cocaine.

“I tried to go out and sell a few drugs and got into trouble,” said the 41-year-old. “I had time to think,” he recalled, adding that included a decision to turn his life around once he was released.

Since then Scott has evidently succeeded with steady employment and the willingness to help other people, particularly youth.

Henry Scott

Henry Scott

Although now living in Suffolk, he was raised in Franklin.

“My heart is still in this place,” said Scott, who regularly visits here.

His intention by talking to young people — particularly about his own experiences — is to, in his words, “derail them” from a bent or crooked path.

“It’s easy to become a statistic of violence and crime,” Scott said. He’s also insistent about the word derail as “it’s the only word that fits” for what he hopes to accomplish.

For his part, he looks to the character of the Good Samaritan as told in the Bible. A man is traveling, robbed, beaten and left for dead. Many people see him, but walk right by. No help’s forthcoming until a Samaritan finds the victim.

“He knew just what to do,” Scott said about the Samaritan. Reading that story and taking it to his own heart has resonated. “I wanted to become a guy like him.”

Apparently, he has in own way.

Chantel Wyche said she met Scott in Dorchester Apartments not too long ago and was asked offhandly by him if he could help contribute shoes to her children and herself as well. She agreed and he did. Nor has her family been the only recipients. Wyche said she’s witnessed this action with other people. She’s also seen him talking to young children about staying in school and staying out of trouble, so as not to experience the painful life lessons he’s endured.

So he’s given himself a challenge to give more of his time and resources. To his happy surprise, Scott has found that sharing doesn’t deplete him.

For example, when he uses his own money to buy shoes for a child, somehow “more money comes in,”  Scott said with a laugh. “I get caught up in giving.”