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20th Century Guitar
First Draft -- Scott Chinery 1960-2000

November 2000
by Larry Acunto

Link to 20th Century Guitar Magazine

n Tuesday, October 24, 2000, Scott Chinery, best known to readers of this magazine as the man behind the Chinery Collection of guitars, passed away suddenly at his home in Toms River, New Jersey at the age of 40. Mr. Chinery accomplished a great deal in his short time here on earth and will be greatly missed by his family and friends.

    Those are the cold, hard facts of the story. But there is a much greater, deeper side to be told of one of the most generous and giving individuals we're likely to see in our lifetime. The most visible example, particularly within the world of guitars, was his generosity with the extraordinary collection of instruments that he, not so much owned, but oversaw and preserved for generations to come. On countless occasions we approached him to "borrow" instruments, usually several dozen at a time, and he never said no. In fact, his usual comment was, "You have carte blanche here, take what ever you want." And we were not the exclusive recipients of this generosity. So many have benefited from his desire to share the guitars, to examine them play them and enjoy them.

    But again, this is just one small aspect of Scott as a person. Scott enjoyed the trappings of success in many areas but these were simply window dressing, toys to temporarily occupy one's time. His passion, his devotion was, first and foremost, his family-his wife, of whom he proudly spoke and was anxious to tell anyone who would listen what a wonderful family he had.

    Children, too, were a passion of Scott's. While the world focused on such things as his guitar collection, he quietly set about the business of helping children everywhere, particularly those suffering from unthinkable disease. And it was not just children he helped, but so many people from all walks of life, all of whom he considered his friends. I could easily fill pages of his generosity in this area, but this was a subject he always held closely. He did not boast about all the good he was doing, he just did what he felt in his heart was right.

    Scott's generosity did not end there, nor did it necessarily involve things material or monetary. No, he was most generous when it came to giving of himself. He always found the time when someone asked for advice, help or simply to talk and, as he usually put it, "hash" things out. And not once did he ever ask for anything in return.

    Scott Chinery achieved a success that most of us only dream about. But he also understood that success carried with it responsibilities, responsibilities to share that success and make the world just a little bit better, one child at a time. It is for these reasons that Scott will be most missed.

    The legacy of Scott Chinery will live on through the values he instilled in his children, the values of kindness, sharing and giving that guided his life. While he has left us far too soon, all of us fortunate to know him will carry his memory for a lifetime.

   Scott Chinery was my friend. I miss him. End

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