Scott Totten
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Scott Totten

Monday, July 6th, 1953 - Sunday, June 7th, 2020

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Scott Benton Totten, 66 of Jefferson City, passed away peacefully Sunday, June 7, 2020, surrounded by his family.

Scott was born on July 6, 1953 to Rita Ann (Clinton) and James Benton Totten in Maysville, MO. Scott graduated an honors student from Chillicothe High School in 1971. He was a proud University of Missouri alumni where he received his Bachelor of Science in Geology in 1975 and then his Master of Arts in Geography in 1977.

Scott grew up enjoying summers with his family fishing at Lake Kabetogama in Minnesota. He and his two brothers were known for their beautiful singing voices and often sang together at church. Scott even lettered in music multiple years as a Baritone in the school band. He grew up helping his Grandpa in his barbershop and wanting to learn everything he could from his Grandma & Grandpa – from how to build and fix things to how to quilt and sew.

Scott began a lifelong career at the Missouri Department of Natural Resources in 1976 while still pursuing his Master’s Degree as an intern Planner in the Water Resource Planning Program. During the department’s formative years, he was able to help create many of the processes, procedures and systems still in use throughout the department today. He worked his way up through the department, including the Director of the Water Protection and Soil Conservation Division, and then the Chief Ombudsmen at the time of his retirement in 2010. But Scott wasn’t ready to stop working for the state he loved, he immediately went back to DNR as a part time employee and continued his work through 2017 as the Receiver for the Benton County Sewer District. Scott had a passion for his work, and it was so much more than a job for him. He had a mission to make the state and the environment better for the future and we can all collectively agree that he fulfilled that mission: through his 40+ years of professional service to his passion that he passed down to his children and grandchildren.

While Scott was a dedicated employee, earning numerous accolades and awards throughout his tenure, he was also incredibly dedicated to his family. On December 12, 1981 he married the love of his life, Lynn Birdsong (even after their first date consisted of him showing her slides of rocks for 3 hours!) Together they built a wonderful life, full of love, laughs, travel and family. Scott was a dedicated Dad to his children, Adam and Leslie and Papa to his grandchildren Madeline, Harper, Samuel and Gwendolyn.

Scott was an avid sports fan. For years being a season ticket holder to MU Football & Basketball, and a lifelong Kansas City Royals and St Louis Cardinals fan. He grew up playing baseball and was a star pitcher, even being scouted by minor league teams. He continued his love of the sport as a founding member of the Wombats, the DNR softball team as well as the Great Central Lumber competitive team. He shared this love of sports with his kids and grandkids, coaching for both his daughter and granddaughter’s softball teams. Scott even continued to play himself up until his cancer diagnosis 13 years ago.

Scott believed in being patient and kind, and he showed both to everyone he met. To know him, was to be a better person. He loved to make us all laugh, whether it was showing off his “big butt rolls”, wearing a wig or funny hat, talking in a silly voice or sharing his dance moves. Scott loved children and dogs and they loved him as well. His best bud was their dog Truman, who never left his side during these last few months. He loved all things outdoors: gardening, fishing, camping, visiting state parks, and teaching others about the wonders of nature. He loved the taste of dark beer and enjoyed sharing a stout brownie sundae from Flat Branch with his family.

In addition to his loving wife of 38 years, Lynn, he is also survived by two children, Adam Moats and wife Stephanie; Leslie Eidson and husband Jason; four grandchildren, Madeline and Harper Moats, Samuel and Gwendolyn Eidson; two brothers, Paul and John Totten; father, James Totten; sister-in-law, Carol Birdsong and spouse Jamey Ashal; sister-in law, Diane Zoellers and husband Mark; and nieces, nephews, additional family and friends.

He was preceded in death by his mother Rita Ann Totten; maternal grandparents Ray and Roberta Clinton; and paternal grandparents Ernest and Anna Lea Totten.

Visitation will be held at Freeman Mortuary from 2:00 until 4:00 pm Saturday, June 13, 2020.

A funeral service will be held at 4:00 pm Saturday, June 13, 2020 in the Freeman Chapel with Chaplain Bart Larson officiating. Graveside services will follow at Riverview Cemetery.

A webcast of the service will begin at 4:00 pm Saturday for friends that are not able to attend by clicking on the photos/video tab, scroll down to the bottom of the page, and click on webcast.

In lieu of flowers, memorials are suggested to Hospice Compassus or Stand Up To Cancer.

Funeral arrangements are under the direction of Freeman Mortuary.

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Scott Totten, please visit our Heartfelt Sympathies Store.

Service Details

  • Visitation

    Saturday, June 13th, 2020 | 2:00pm - 4:00pm
    Freeman Mortuary
    915 Madison Street
    Saturday, June 13th, 2020
    2:00pm - 4:00pm
  • Service

    Saturday, June 13th, 2020 | 4:00pm
    Freeman Chapel
    915 Madison Street
    Saturday, June 13th, 2020
    Chaplain Bart Larson
  • Interment

    Riverview Cemetery
    2600 West Main Street

Condolences & Tributes

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Linda and Mark Otten and Ryan Weber and the Warhawks sent flowers to the family of Scott Totten.
Hand delivered by a local florist
Linda and Mark Otten and Ryan Weber and the Warhawks sent flowers to the family of Scott Totten.
Hand delivered by a local florist


My deep sympathies on Scott's passing. I worked with Scott at MDNR and he was a great mentor to me. Scott always had time to listen, to talk, and to share his extensive experience with colleagues. He his positive attitude frequently brightened my day. He was taken too soon. I have made a contribution to Stand Up to Cancer in his honor. Sending good wishes to the family for comfort and healing.
Comment | Posted at 10:57am via Condolence

Llona Weiss

Dear Lynn and Totten family,
The memorial service today was very fitting for Scott. I had to attend via the webcast because of Covid-19, and so wanted to be there and hug you and hug all of our DNR family. The words that Sara Parker Pauley said, and her reading of Steve Mahfood's words, were my feelings exactly. Thank you so much for sharing Scott...he was a rock for all of us who "traveled through DNR."
Comment | Posted at 05:56pm via Condolence

Lynn Totten

Thank you Llona. He was a wonderful person who made a difference in this world. I'm going to miss him so much.
Posted at 08:53am

Linda and Mark Otten

Please accept our most heartfelt sympathies for your lossour thoughts are with you and your family during this difficult time.
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Memorial Flowers Purchased

purchased the The FTD Comfort Planter and planted a memorial tree for the family of Scott Totten.
Comment | Posted at 10:18am via Floral Arrangements

Lynn Totten

Thank you Linda and Mark.
Posted at 02:19pm

Jan Sapp

Lynn, I am sorry to hear of Scott’s passing.
I never had the pleasure of meeting him, but heard so many nice things about him. Love and hugs to you and your family.
Comment | Posted at 09:33am via Condolence

Lynn Totten

Thank you for your kind words Jan
Posted at 02:28pm

Dan Schuette

Lynn, Adam and Leslie, so sorry to hear of Scott’s passing. As many others have already said, Scott was a great man and a loyal friend. Scott introduced me to both the Wombats and Great Central Lumber softball teams, where we became good friends and had many fun times.
We worked closely together at DNR. Scott’s environmental knowledge and history with DNR was amazing. I could always count on Scott to explain the history of an issue (His filing system and ability to find an old document was amazing) so we would have a better idea of what happened and how to plan an appropriate path forward. When DEQ was split into the water and land divisions, Scott was always available to help make sure the transition proceeded smoothly.
Sarah and I wish you peace and happiness as you move forward from this time. You are in our thoughts and prayers.
Dan and Sarah Schuette
Comment | Posted at 05:54pm via Condolence

Lynn Totten

Thank you Dan and Sarah. He was an amazing man.
Posted at 02:31pm

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