An Open Letter to my Uncle Stuart Scott

The day you love to brag most about to me- January 6, 1993- 9 hours after I was born in Orlando, Florida
January 6, 1993- 9 hours after I was born in Orlando, Florida

Dear Uncle Stuart,

Today is my birthday, and I never thought I would be writing this letter to you, but I wanted to express my unconditional love for you in my blog (which I am still figuring out). I miss you dearly and hope you can read this from heaven.

So, here it is. The time I have been dreading for a while now. Uncle Stuart, you’re gone, and while my words will be short, I hope my words can bring another side to you that most never got the chance to know.

While many knew you as Stuart Scott, Stu, Mr. Booyah, my sister and I grew up and loved you as Uncle Stuart. I was born in 1993, the same year you started your career at ESPN 2. You held me at 9 hours old after my birth, and I have felt your love ever since then. You, Aunt Kim, my dad, and my mom were the best couple duo and the best of friends back in the day (I have pictures to prove, and boy, they were great). You became my sister’s godfather shortly after she was born, and my family was so blessed to welcome you in our family. You officially became our Uncle Stuart.

I had so much fun as a kid with Sydni and Taelor. My favorite memory of you was being able to get the VIP experience at Disney World. We would eat at restaurants, and so many people would come up to you and ask for a picture. Honestly, I had no idea why… I knew you were a big deal to me, but not to the rest of world. As a child, I had no idea the impact you made in the sports broadcasting industry and how your famous catchphrases forever changed the journalism landscape. I just knew you as my cool Uncle Stuart, and we always looked forward to hanging out with Sydni and Taelor in Connecticut. During the holidays, I remember we came to visit. The snow was so thick outside, and we got to sled in your backyard. I cannot say that would have ever happened in Florida, but it was a fond memory, and one I will hold deep in my heart. The world got to see you on television, but we got to experience you and your coolness on a personal level. I will forever be grateful for that time.

When the devastating news came, you announced you had cancer and were undergoing treatments. At the time, my parents did not tell me much because I did not understand what that meant to you and your life. But, we all knew your tenacious attitude and knew you would beat it. Uncle Stuart, you’re right, you beat cancer by how you lived, why you lived, and the manner in which you lived. It did not beat you. I would text you from time to time and tell you to continue fighting and stay strong. You would tell me you loved me each time. I knew you meant it, and I prayed really hard for your full recovery, but God had other plans. Throughout your painful journey to fighting cancer, you have helped me tremendously during my college years. You’ve helped me with internships, career advice, and your overall journalism knowledge. You have done nothing but supported me along the way. You would shout me out on Twitter and you always told me you loved me and to keep pushing forward. I hope to make you very proud, and when I’m struggling or feeling down, I will think of you. You’ve faced more challenges then most, but you never stopped fighting not once.

With that Uncle Stuart I say thank you, and I love you. I wanted to share this with others; so hopefully, they understand the amount of love we have for you. Your legacy will continue, and I hope to be a part of it. I think many of us can agree that your success on ESPN came from you always staying true to yourself. I never realized how important that advice is until now. As I enter into my last semester of college, I will remain true to who I am, so I can only hope to inspire others as you inspired the world.

Taelor and Sydni, I know you are hurting right now, and I pray God brings you healing and peace. Stay strong girls, and I hope to see you and Aunt Kim very soon.

I am sad Uncle Stuart. Cancer takes the best people out of this world, and I will never understand why, but what I do know is that your ESPY’s speech truly taught me to live my life to the fullest. Uncle Stuart, you are my warrior angel now, and I know you will watch over us from heaven. Many people loved you on SportsCenter, but we loved you as our Uncle. #LOVEANDBOOYAH

Xoxo,

Shelby Lena (SLC), your niece

P.S.

While I still feel a strong sense of sadness from the loss, I am able to smile by these throwbacks of you. My mom found some old pictures, so I know you will love seeing these. Rest Easy Uncle Stu. LIVESTRONG in heaven as you did on this earth.

My mom talks about this picture so much. This was when you and Aunt Kim threw my mom her baby shower for me. Fantastic cameraman, I must say.
My mom talks about this picture all the time. This was when you and Aunt Kim threw my mom a baby shower for me. Fantastic cameraman, I must say.
The day you became Kaysey’s (my sister) godfather at Macedonia Baptist Church
The day you became Kaysey’s (my sister) godfather at Macedonia Baptist Church
Kaysey's favorite picture
Kaysey’s favorite picture
You and I together at your house in Florida. Check out the clothes.
You and I together at your house in Florida. Check out the clothes.
NYE Sugar Bowl Party 1992. My mom said she was begging you to get off that table before you got fired.
NYE Sugar Bowl Party 1992. My mom said she was begging you to get off that table before you got fired.

Your tweets meant more to me more than you know:

Kaysey, Taelor, and I
Kaysey, Taelor, and I

IMG_9093

Love, love, love you.

Much love Uncle Stu. Much love…

3 thoughts on “An Open Letter to my Uncle Stuart Scott

  1. Shelby this is a beautiful letter. The pictures are fantastic and I do remember alot of those moments as well! I know Uncle Stu would be and is proud of you. Continue to stay focused as you continue on your college journey and move into that next level of life. You are beautiful and intelligent and I am so proud of you as well.

  2. Shelby, this is a beautiful letter. I will never forget how I felt, knowing that Uncle Stu got to see you sitting on a major network, talking on news worthy topics, under extreme pressure, because you did’t know what the questions were going to be, and him feeling a sense of pride by letting ALL his fans know how he held you 9hrs after you were born. Priceless!

  3. A beautiful, heartfelt tribute to an absolute trailblazer! Shelby, your love for your Uncle is so very evident and woven between every line…You are an amazing young woman, and now you’ve got a brand new guardian angel on your shoulder…May you find comfort I’m your lovely memories…God bless..

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