Paul Bickett “Scoot” Summey II (1946 - 2018) - Born in Hampton, VA, Paul was an Air Force brat who grew up all over the South, including Tryon, NC; Gaffney, SC; Savannah, GA; and Columbus, MS. He graduated from the Georgia Military Academy in Atlanta, GA, and tried his hand at UNC-Chapel Hill for a few semesters, before eventually landing at Ole Miss. While there, Paul was a member of the Kappa Alpha fraternity, in Army ROTC, graduated with a degree in Education, and never once spent any time in the library.
Before entering the Army, Paul taught PE for a year at the American School in Taipei, Taiwan, where he met his future wife, Diane. They were married in September 1969 at Fort Bragg, NC, and Paul’s first active duty stations were in glamorous Mineral Wells, TX, and Fort Rucker, AL, while Paul was in helicopter flight school. A year later, Paul was sent to Vietnam, where he received the Bronze Star, Distinguished Flying Cross and other commendations. After Vietnam, Paul stayed in the service and he and Diane lived in Panama for a year and a half. At the time of his discharge he had achieved the rank of Captain.
Paul and Diane moved to Atlanta and then Miami, FL, eventually ending up in Cypress, CA, in 1976. By then, Paul had already begun his 30 year career at Procter & Gamble. He was an award-winning salesman (most proud of his “Safe Driving Awards”), manager and corporate trainer with a car trunk stuffed with toothbrushes, Crest, Scope and Pampers. Paul enjoyed the California weather but not the traffic. He was happy to return to the East Coast in 1983 where he and Diane lived in Herndon, VA, until 2004, when they retired to Asheville, NC. While in Virginia, Paul earned his Masters in Pastoral Counseling from Loyola College in Maryland.
Paul never met a stranger and could find a shared connection with anyone. His network of friends is as extensive as it is eclectic. Always quick with a story or a laugh, he was a kind and gentle man with a robust sense of humor and a genuine interest in other people. He loved tai chi and enjoyed attending tai chi camp every year at Keuka Lake, NY, and teaching at the YMCA and throughout Asheville. A fan of meditation and yoga, he juggled, could ride a unicycle, and walk super fast with a special group of walking buddies. Although he complained about not liking board games, Paul almost never lost a game of Parcheesi.
Paul was an avid sports fan, frequently cursing at his beloved Tar Heels or Ole Miss Rebels if they didn’t live up to his expectations. He embraced technology, even if he didn’t always understand it, frequently texting and keeping in touch with friends all over the country. He appreciated fine art and could happily spend hours in any museum, especially the National Gallery and Chicago Art Institute. Paul was intellectually curious, always with a book to read, and enjoyed everything from Tom Clancy novels to Eastern Buddhist Philosophy.
In retirement, Paul took up cycling, racquetball, white-water kayaking, and hiking with a wonderful group of friends. He indulged his love of spa treatments, including facials and mani/pedis. He developed his passion for photography, learning as much as he could through books, classes and online tutorials. He enjoyed sending his nature and travel photos to family and friends, always claiming that he still had much to learn. He loved peanut butter, Duke’s relish, going to movies with his son Tripp and heading over to Greensboro to visit with his grandchildren. He was a member of All Souls Church in Biltmore Village, drawn in by the generous and welcoming spirit of its congregation.
Paul had a love for traveling and could find a Starbucks in any corner of the world. He and Diane made a yearly visit to Oxford, England, where he was on a first name basis with most of the shop owners and had a “frequent buyer” card from the local coffee house. He went all over the globe, including Slovenia, Italy, the Netherlands, Hungary, Czechoslovakia, Austria, Switzerland and France. On a trip to Australia and New Zealand with his family, Paul was dubbed “Action Man” by some admiring tourists as he bungee jumped in Queenstown. He always enjoyed returning home to NC, where he liked the food, and had an extensive network of cousins, aunts, uncles and close friends that he enjoyed spending time with.
Paul is survived by his wife, Diane; daughter, Heather; son, Tripp; son-in-law, Joe; and 4 grandchildren, Robbie, Jacob, Lizzie and Caroline. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Fisher House Foundation, the American Cancer Society or a charity of one’s choice.
The family would like to extend its thanks to the medical staffs at the Mission Cancer Center, Mission Hospital and the CarePartners Solace Center for their exceptional care of Paul.
A Celebration of Life will be held at 10:00 AM on Saturday, June 2 in the Chapel of Groce Funeral Home at Lake Julian. His family will receive friends following the service.