Advertisement

SUNDAY STORY:The man, the dream

Jim Scott has worked tirelessly to bring a stadium to Costa Mesa and is now seeing his goal come into view.

November 26, 2006|By Michael Miller

He is rarely able to toss a football. Most of the time, Jim Scott is confined to a wheelchair, and in his Estancia High School jersey — covered in patches from the school's championship teams — he maintains a sporty look. His friends use words like "pit bull" and "military" to describe him, but his voice, for the time being, is mostly silent.

Scott, who helped launch the campaign 10 years ago to bring a stadium to Estancia, has sat on the sidelines for the last few months as his dream became a reality. In April, the 80-year-old Costa Mesa resident suffered a stroke, and it may take years for his health to improve. When the Newport-Mesa Unified School District breaks ground on the Estancia stadium in January, then, Scott will probably not wield one of the shovels — but his colleagues hope that he can perform another feat.

That would be a single victory lap around the Estancia track. It may take a scooter, it may take an hour to complete, but the other members of Costa Mesa United want to see their founding father make it once around.

Advertisement

"I don't care how Jim does it, but that would be one of the nicer moments in the history of Costa Mesa as a city," said John Ursini, the owner of the Newport Rib Co. restaurant and a member of the nonprofit group.

Earlier this month, the Newport-Mesa school district announced that the Estancia stadium would be the first project started under Measure F, the $282-million school renovation bond that voters approved in November 2005. Paul Reed, the district's deputy superintendent, has estimated that the work will take about 14 months. By the time Estancia plays its first home game, the district may have started building an Olympic-sized swimming pool at Costa Mesa High School — the other project that Scott co-founded Costa Mesa United to fund.

"It took a fanatical, pit bull persistence to get this to happen," his son, Jim Scott Jr., said "It's like a pit bull because you grab onto an idea and a million people say no, and then one person says yes."

There may have been a time when only one person wanted to boost Costa Mesa's athletic facilities, but when Scott first floated the idea in the mid-1990s, he found at least one kindred spirit.

Daily Pilot Articles Daily Pilot Articles
|
|
|