top of page

Share a Memory:

Upon submitting your memory, please refresh your page to view your condolences.

Your content has been submitted

An error occurred. Try again later


Phillip Michael Scanlan


Phillip Michael Scanlan, 76, died peacefully surrounded by his family at his home in Amelia Island on June 15, 2020 after a courageous battle with cancer. He was the beloved partner of Judy Comley of Amelia Island. Phil was born on January 12, 1944, in Cambridge, Massachusetts to the late Charles Patrick Scanlan and Mary Elizabeth Scanlan, and lived in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and New Jersey before moving to Florida.

Phil grew up in Arlington, graduated from Arlington High School, and then went on to earn a B.S. and M.S. from Northeastern University, where he also trained in the ROTC. He was a decorated Army veteran who proudly served in Vietnam after graduating from college. He went on to have a successful career, retiring at age 56 as AT&T�s Quality Vice President. He raised a beautiful family, is the author of several quality solution books, and with great joy served his community in many ways � from improving the quality of the NJ ocean (serving a 10-year term on the Board of Directors for the Ocean Conservancy), rivers in Istanbul, improving schools, as a founding member of the Kraft Tennis Club, to helping to add bike trails throughout Amelia Island, and many other philanthropic ventures. He was never happier than when traveling with Judy: biking the Erie Canal, cruising, or touring Israel.

Phil had an incredibly generous spirit and was a devoted father and grandfather. He is survived by his four children, Walter S. Scanlan and his wife Janet, Maureen I. Scanlan and her husband Pete Johnstone, Michelle A. Scanlan, and John P. Scanlan and his wife Amy; his eleven grandchildren, Trevor Pote, Travis Grooms and his wife Cheyenne, Lauren and Sarah Woolwine, Isabelle, Meara, Charlie, Reagan, Jack, and Patrick Scanlan; and his great-granddaughter Elaina Grooms. He is also survived by his brother Thomas Scanlan and many beloved nieces and nephews. Phil was the brother of the late Charles Scanlan, II and Mary Lou Flanagan; he was predeceased by his wife Jane.

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the family is having a private service. They are deeply sorry that Phil�s many cherished extended family and friends will not be able to attend a service to celebrate his life. The family asks that you honor him by being kind to one another, working to make the world a more equitable place, striving to keep the oceans of the world clean, and by voting in the upcoming election. As a colleague said about Phil, �One could not ask more for a citizen of the planet. I am a better person for knowing him.�

Donations in Phillip Scanlan�s memory may be made to Barnabas (for Adult Bikes Program) to supply refurbished used bikes to adults on Amelia Island in need of transportation to get to work: Barnabas, 1303 Jasmine St., Suite 101, Fernandina Beach, FL 32034; or to the Ocean Conservancy at


Sending love and support to Phil�s family and friends during this difficult time. He was a marveleous man and will be sorely missed. Charlotte Meyer � Ocean Conservancy

To Phill�s family and friends a very sad day for our community..
He was always doing things to make all of our lives better .
Thank you for your kindnsss

NANCY PETRILLO June 18, 2020
To Phil�s family, our deepest condolences and sympathy. Phil was such a caring person and always working to do something good for others. From his Ocean Village neighbors, Pat & Nancy Petrillo.

JOHN FLANAGAN June 18, 2020
Uncle Phil Had so many wonderful qualities. He was always so kind and good natured, positive and striving to make changes for the betterment of others. An excellent role model that we can all look to and think about during challenging times. He would provide loving and honest advice. Those qualities filtered down into all of his children and they are wonderful people as a result that will carry his legacy on. Those that knew Phil and had the pleasure of spending time with him are better for it. Say hi to Lou Lou.

Phil was instrumental in the establishing of Kraft Tennis Club on Amelia Island, back in 2008. To this day the club flourishes, and the spirit and good work that Phil provided over the years, as he enjoyed his tennis, has given Kraft a wonderful legacy of community service, healthy activity, and a club membership based on his spirit of do good, help one another and make this Island better for being here. He will be missed. All of the Board at Kraft Tennis offer their sympathy to the family on Phil�s passing.

MR. & MRS. CHARLES PANELLA June 18, 2020
Chuck and I are so sorry, we send our heart felt condolences to Judy. May the memories that she and Phil shared be of comfort to her.

TERI SOPP June 18, 2020
If there could only be a thousand Phil Scanlons in our community life would be so much better. What an amazing human being. We should all strive to be like Phil. He will be missed.

Vietnam Veterans of America Chapter 1088 is proud to have had Phil as a member and he will be missed by all of us. We all offer the family of Phil our deepest sympathy. He will be missed.

MIKE PIKULA June 18, 2020
Phil is a loss to many of us. He was a most active man, involved and passionate about many causes and ideals. We local bicyclists and our trail community will sincerely miss his friendship, leadership, enthusiasm and knowledge.

MIKE FLANAGAN June 18, 2020
Phil lived such an active and multi-faceted life that touched so many people in many different and profound ways. I had the privilege of having him as an uncle. I don�t know if I really understood it as a kid but as I grew it became very clear to me that he was a tremendous role model. Not sure that any of us could match his intellect, his energy or his genuine wish to wake up every day and make the world better in ways big and small, for his family, for his community, for people he had never met and for generations to come. But he surely left this world a better place.

DON HUGHES June 19, 2020
Phil was always working on some issue or project to improve the quality of life locally and for our society. He used his well developed analytical skills to address challenges and to create paths to resolve them. challenges. One of my favorite memories of Phil was a boat trip on my small fishing boat over to Tiger Island to look for Manatees. He and his life long school friends, who reunited every year, joined me for the outing. We saw lots of Manatees and had a lot of bellyache laughs. In Phil�s fashion, he sent me a collection of photographs he had taken of the trip within a week. He rarely left any loose ends. Thank you Phil for all your contributions to humanity. My condolences to his family and loved ones.

Phil was a good friend and neighbor in Ocean Village for twenty years. He brought us energy, vision, and courage of his convictions. He was fiscally conservative, environmentally aware, and socially compassionate. My fondest memories with Phil were campaigning in western Nassau County when he ran for county commissioner. He was the most highly qualified candidate for local office that I have ever known. Our sincerest sympathy and understanding go out to his family in the difficult time. Phil will be fondly remembered and sorely missed.

HERB HILLER June 19, 2020
I met Phil while working on a book about highway A1A. I was right away struck by his passion, intelligence and imagination in how he made his work far more than his job and for his growing contributions to his northeast Florida home. He constantly inspired my own passion for Florida trails that in many ways showed me how he esteemed his own life by service to others. Gone way too soon, dear Phil. I grieve with you, Judy.

To Judy. Sorry about the passing of Phil. �God gave us memories so we will have roses in December�. .He was a brilliant man and made significant contribution to our community. He will be missed.

I am so sorry for your loss Walter, Maureen, Michelle and John.. So many good memories playing at you home, in Chester, swimming in your pool, eating your food! Your father was a great man.

LORELEI JACOBS June 22, 2020
How often can one say that knowing another person has made you a better person? That was what Phil was for me. Phil, thank you for all you gave � your time, energy, humor and laughter, inspiration � to those of us lucky enough to know you.

I send my deep condolences to lovely Judy Comely and to all those who loved Phil � especially Richie, Alan, and Justin, whom I had the pleasure of meeting a few times. Phil did so much good in this world; I am in awe of it. We spent Memorial Day biking on one of the island�s new trails, thanks to you know who. Phil�s legacy is evident far and wide. We have lost a wonderful human being.

TERRY GRADY June 23, 2020
I have never met Mr. Scanlan, however, whenever I read a piece written by him or someone referred to him and his endeavors, I thought �Now there is someone who is really making a positive impact on others�. We can�t say that about many people these days.

MARGO STORY June 24, 2020
Sincere condolences to the family�..may the eternal light shine upon Phil.

KATHY BRICKER June 27, 2020
I was privileged to know Phil Scanlan through the Ocean Conservancy. He is one of those people who you stop and listen to carefully as soon as he speaks, because he always shared ideas and words of wisdom. He was kind enough to donate an entire training seminar to our staff on quality management based on his knowledge and experience. To this day, in the non-profits I help, I encourage the concept of �continuous improvement.� Everything changes constantly, so one never reaches an ideal state where one can stop. Even when facing setbacks, striving for continuous improvement instead of perfection makes each day manageable. Phil�s book The Dolphins Are Back testifies to his desire to put quality control into action to solve a large problem via data collection followed by positive feedback encouragement mechanisms. Phil �continuously improved� his company, his community, and much of the world, setting an example for the rest of us. I will remember him fondly.

YANELLA PARRA June 28, 2020
Condolences to Judy and Phil�s family. I got to know Phil through the Unitarian Universalist Church of Jacksonville and was fortunate enough to spend a week at The Mountain, taking classes, hiking, and socializing with Judy and Phil. What an inspiring role model for all of us. Gone too soon.

MARY KRAMEK June 28, 2020
To Judy, all the children, grandchildren, his beloved great grand daughter, and all who shared his life and adventures, we salute a life well lived and his legacy of good works. It was always amazing to learn what Phil was up to next. He loved all of his family, friends and the broader community beyond measure. He will be greatly missed.

MARK POWELL October 1, 2020
My condolences to Phil�s family and love ones. I knew Phil through his work on the Ocean Conservancy Board. Phil was supportive and helpful and gladly shared his knowledge and advice, and both were welcome. I was thinking about Phil recently and help he provided to me. I wish I could talk to him today, I know of a project where I could use his advice!

bottom of page