Jones offered dedication

Scott Jones

FAIRMONT — It’s always a difficult time when we have to say goodbye to our friends and loved ones. While it cannot take away our grief, it helps to remember the qualities and nature of the people we have lost.

In the case of Scott Jones, while many may not have known him personally, he was an unsung hero to the whole of Martin County. Jones, 56, passed away peacefully at his home on Feb. 20.

Jones worked for the county highway department for more than 35 solid years, most recently as maintenance superintendent. Working early and long hours, Jones is described by his co-workers as a highly dedicated man who never wavered in his duties.

County Engineer Kevin Peyman recently shared some of Jones’ history with the department, as well as some words about his work.

“Scott was first hired as summer help for the highway department in 1982 and 1983,” Peyman said. “He was hired full time in November 1983 [and] he worked a variety of maintenance positions until he took the crew foreman job and became a supervisor for us in 2001. In 2013, Scott took over our top maintenance position by becoming the maintenance superintendent, where he worked until he passed away.”

Peyman noted that Jones was the person up at 3 a.m. checking roads to decide when plows needed to go out in the winter. He was also responsible for all summer maintenance activities.

“Scott did so much for Martin County, it’s hard to even explain everything he did,” Peyman said. “One of the most important things he did, though, was care about his job. He cared about the work we do, and he cared about doing our best to try and make sure people that use our roads get home safe at the end of the day to their families.

“Scott always cared about doing a great job, not just about collecting a check. Because he cared, he thought through decisions and the long-term consequences they could have for the county, even if that meant making decisions that made his job more difficult in the moment.”

Peyman said Jones endeared himself to the public, noting he would often receive calls about Jones’ conscientious attitude and expressions of thanks for a job well done.

“I couldn’t even count how many times I’ve gotten that call over the years,” he said.

Jones kept up his approachable and friendly demeanor when representing the county to a variety of agencies.

“As maintenance superintendent, Scott had a lot of contact with the public and other agencies like townships and [the Minnesota Department of Transportation]. He always represented us well in those situations. So many different people had Scott’s number. All I can really say is Scott was a great example of what we should want out of our employees and supervisors.

“He was liked and respected by everyone. Losing him so suddenly and unexpectedly, it’s going to take a long time before the department feels normal again.”

Jones is survived by, among others, his wife, Darcy, of Fairmont; Tyler Laue and his wife, Jessica, of Fairmont; and Hayley Jones and Jack Houlihan of Minneapolis.