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Chaplin, Nancy Rankin Scarton

  • On June 24, 2022

Nancy Rankin Scarton Chaplin, 87, of Pittsburgh, PA passed away peacefully on June 21st surrounded by her immediate family after a brief battle with cancer. Loving wife, mother, grandmother, aunt, and great aunt to a large, blended family dolling out love in equal measure. All who knew her were amazed at her endless energy, enthusiasm, and unwillingness to accept anything less than your best. She was the consummate “best friend” to all, remembering every birthday or life milestone and was always the first to lend a hand. She set a high standard for all.

Born on Bastille Day (July 14th), 1934, she led an amazing accomplishment-filled life. A life-long resident of the Pittsburgh area, Nancy graduated from Mt. Lebanon High School and Syracuse University where she was an active member of the Delta Delta Delta sorority. Following graduation, she married her high school sweetheart Foster Rankin in 1956 and settled in Bethel Park where they fashioned their home from a repurposed stable. This home was the center of neighborhood activities capped off by an annual 4th of July picnic – her favorite holiday. Nancy possessed an indomitable spirit overcoming the sudden loss of her husband Foster in 1977. Thrust into the role of provider, she returned to work in 1978 establishing Perkins General Store in Mt. Lebanon that was a fixture on Beverly Road for more than 25 years. Nancy remarried in 1983 to Richard “Dick” Scarton and enjoyed a 23-year marriage that blended her family with his. She overcame significant losses with Dick’s passing in 2006, her daughter Margaret’s death in 2010, and stepdaughter Susan’s death in 2016. Relocating to Shady Side in 2008, Nancy served in volunteer leadership roles with the Women’s Committee of the Carnegie Museum of Art, Phipps Conservatory and Gilda’s Club pursuing her interests in the arts, gardening, and cancer support fundraising. In 2010 she was introduced to James Chaplin through a blind date that eventually led to their marriage in 2012. Among her many interests, she loved to travel including a capstone trip to Paris with her family to celebrate her 80th birthday on Bastille Day observing the festivities from the Champs Elysees.

Nancy is survived by her sons Gordon (Kelly) Rankin of Cincinnati, OH and Bruce (Nancy) Rankin of Annapolis, MD, stepchildren Dana Scarton of Washington, DC, Ronald (Cathy) Scarton of Hermitage, PA, Jennifer (David) Malof of Cincinnati, OH, and Craig Chaplin of Chatsworth, GA. As “Nana” she was grandmother to Foster, Charles, Benjamin and William Rankin, Jessica Fuhrer Burns, Molly Fuhrer, Caitlyn Notman, Zachary, Jacob and Samuel Scarton, Nathan and Eliza Lucas, and Jamie Chaplin. Included in her extended family are many nieces and nephews whose lives she touched along with her friends in Providence Point and across the City of Pittsburgh. She was preceded in death by her husbands Foster Rankin, Richard Scarton and James Chaplin, her daughter Margaret Rankin, stepdaughter Sue Scarton Fuhrer, and brother William Perkins.

Services are planned for July 14th at Southminster Presbyterian Church (799 Washington Rd, Pittsburgh, PA 15228) at 11am. Contributions in her memory may be made to the Carnegie Museum of Art, the Phipps Conservatory, or Cancer Bridges of Pittsburgh.

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Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens
Our hearts go out to the family at this sorrowful time.