James Slater Haskell Jr., better known as "Scott," died on Sunday, May 25, in the nearshore waters of the Atlantic Ocean.
He was born August 13, 1953, in Rosemont, Pennsylvania, to Patricia Mallard and James Slater Haskell. He grew up in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, where he and his sisters were raised by their mother, and spent summers with his father in Laguna Beach, California. He graduated from Whitefish Bay High School (Wisconsin) in 1971.
Scott moved to Key West and married Monica Haskell in 1976. While raising a family of three on Cudjoe Key, he earned his Florida Contractor's License and established H & S Builders with his business partner, the late Tom Stump. Scott renovated La Te Da and other historic wood frame structures in Key West before turning his focus to new residential and marine construction. He built the bridge to Wahoo Key and many waterfront homes in Sugarloaf Shores, where he founded Haskell Construction in 1995.
On days when the seas were calm, Scott's jobsites were quiet. He was an adept and daring fisherman who fished commercially for snapper and grouper, and recreationally for tournament-winning amberjack and marlin. In the days before GPS and twin engines, Scott was known for a log-book of "secret spots" from the Cay Sal Bank to the Dry Tortugas, to the wrecks and fresh-water springs of the Gulf of Mexico. He loved loud music, old westerns, his children, and snorkeling in clear water.
Scott's last years were marked by profound challenges and new joys. He adopted a daughter in 2008 and moved to North Carolina in 2010, where he married for a third time. He returned home this year to Key West, where he is survived by sons Arlo Haskell and Evan Haskell, daughter Elena Haskell; daughters-in-law Ashley Kamen and Camila Duke; son-in-law Aaron Snell; grandsons Phineas and Cannon Haskell; and granddaughter Olivia Snell. He is also survived by ex-wife Monica Haskell, of Key West; sisters Sabina Haskell, of Vermont, and Kathy Stanford, of Wisconsin, and their families; step-father Tim Sullivan, of Wisconsin; wife Stephanie Hartley and stepdaughter Grace Hartley, of North Carolina; and daughter, Lillian Haskell, of North Carolina.
A memorial will be held at the White Street Pier at 6:00 p.m. on Friday, June 6, 2014. His ashes will be scattered at sea.