With an undeniable reluctance to leave his wife and family, but enveloped in unwavering Christian confidence, on the night of May 12, 2014, J. Scott McFadyen, Jr. “loosed the surly bonds of earth and touched the face of God.” His life was devoted to excellence. He grew up in Fayetteville. He said the Children’s Catechism at First Presbyterian Church, perfectly executed a game-changing quick-kick for Fayetteville High in 1946 that the coach did not expect, and graduated from Davidson College in 1951. He completed OCS with the US Air Force in a three-year stint.
Scott returned to Fayetteville in 1954 to take over the then-paltry family business, McFadyen Music. In that same year, he married Virginia McQueen and subsequently fathered three sons. The couple’s unified vision of child-rearing never faltered in 27 years, and those three boys today all live and work in Fayetteville, NC with their own families, all with college educations for which Scott paid, and all as officers in the same church that nurtured Scott and Virginia in their own childhoods. Though his marriage to Virginia eventually failed, their friendship rekindled as the years rolled by, and the two last sat together for Sunday lunch in April to celebrate a grandson’s formal acceptance of Jesus Christ.
In 1992, he married Julia Taylor of Charlotte in what would become for Scott the culminating find in all of his searches for excellence. Their exploits together were based out of Charlotte, Fayetteville, and Emerald Isle. Their time together was both quiet and boisterous; modest and glitzy. Their mutual devotion was unmistakable, Christ-based, and life-long from wedding to death-did-they-part. Julia held Scott’s hand as he drew his last breath, culminating her near-sleepless five-day vigil at his bedside. To the expansive community that came to know Scott in his 84 years, McFadyen Music was his pinnacle achievement. He forcibly resuscitated it out of the gasps of business death in 1954, building it into what would become a nationally acclaimed business model in the retail musical instrument industry. During his tenure as CEO through 2000, he imparted philosophical reasoning to support profitability. And profitability could be justified only if the associates augmented customer-dollars spent with their own service to that customer and with unflappable integrity in the process. At the day of his sale of the company, over 200 people enjoyed Scott’s signature in the bottom right corner of their paycheck.
Scott was preceded in death by his father and mother, J. Scott and Hattie C. McFadyen, his loving sister Zula M. Barton, and treasured daughter-in-law Brenda C. McFadyen. Left to seek excellence in his own manner are his wife, Julia Taylor McFadyen, sons J. Malcolm McFadyen and wife Mona, William C. McFadyen and wife Susanna, and John Scott McFadyen, all of Fayetteville, and step-daughter Shannon R. Whichard and husband Marty of Greenville, NC, eight grandchildren and a great-granddaughter.
In lieu of flowers, contributions in Scott’s honor may be made to: J. Scott McFadyen Fund for Parkinson’s Disease Research, UNC Medical Foundation of NC, Campus Box 7565, Chapel Hill, NC 27514-2600; First Presbyterian Church, PO Box 569, Fayetteville, NC 28302, or Greater Insights Ministries, 513 Gillespie St., Fayetteville, NC 28301. Arrangements entrusted to Rogers and Breece Funeral Home, 500 Ramsey Street, Fayetteville, NC.