Coping with Grief
We would like to offer our sincere support to anyone coping with grief. Enter your email below for our complimentary daily grief messages. Messages run for up to one year and you can stop at any time. Your email will not be used for any other purpose.
Loretta Ann Scales, of East Orange, NJ, transitioned from earth to her eternal home in heaven on Friday, October 20, 2023. She was surrounded by her family & friends in her last hours. Loretta transitioned with her daughter Tyree Brooks and Tyree’s partner Kisha Coleman by her side. Loretta was born March 3, 1961, the second child born to Leon R. & Ruth A. Scales in Camp Lejeune, North Carolina. She grew up in Freehold Borough, NJ. She attended Court Street Elementary School, Freehold Intermediate, and Freehold Borough H.S. She would later attend Essex County College where she would go on to be a first-generation college student earning an Associate in Applied Science with Honors in Human and Social Services degree in 2013. She would continue to get her certification as a Certified Alcohol and Drug Counselor (CADC) for the State of New Jersey.
The highlight of Loretta’s career was between 2011 and the present. She worked for Robinson Educational Center as a Behavior Modification Coordinator, Hyacinth Foundation as a Group Navigator, Airmid Counseling Service as a Drug & Alcohol Counselor, and Greater Essex Counseling Service as a Sr. Intake Coordinator and Drug & Alcohol Counselor Intern. Loretta also served on the Board of Trustees of the Court Street School Education Community Center in Freehold.
Loretta met William “Billy” Garrett (deceased) and to that union was born a son, William JaiHeen Shonte Garrett, III in 1978. She would later meet Harold Brooks (deceased) and to that union was born a daughter, Tyree Julinar Brooks who tirelessly and selflessly cared for her mother during her illness, especially in the last weeks.
Loretta was an avid artist who also loved to write poetry. She believed it was important to tell her story if it could help save someone who was living the life she lived before she turned her life around. She has always been transparent about her decades of addiction and how incarceration led her to sobriety and led her back to the Lord. Every April 7th Loretta would celebrate her sobriety journey. In 2023, Loretta celebrated 18 years clean and sober. Loretta always reflected on her old life and knew that God had never left her side. Loretta dedicated her life to God and grew in her faith walk. Her life became her testimony that she’s, “been through the fire and don’t smell like smoke” and giving back to her community became her passion. Loretta believed if God could use her, He can use anyone.
Loretta was baptized at very young age at Second Baptist Church, Freehold, NJ. Loretta started going back to church with her sister, Rev. Robyn Keys and in December 2008 she joined Quinn Chapel African Methodist Episcopal Church, Atlantic Highlands, NJ. Loretta answered her call to the ministry of Evangelism in 2011 under the pastorship of the Rev. Dr. Theresa H. Smith. Later that year on June 26th she preached her trial sermon. Loretta attended the New Jersey Annual Conference Ministerial Institute where she would set a precedent by being the first Evangelist in the New Jersey Annual Conference of the A.M.E. Church to attend the Ministerial Institute. Loretta was licensed to preach by the New Brunswick District Conference in 2012 under Presiding Elder, Rev. Vernard R. Leak. In 2014, Evangelist Loretta Scales was confirmed and certified to serve as an Evangelist by the Presiding Prelate of the First Episcopal District of the African Methodist Episcopal Church, New Jersey Annual Conference, Bishop Gregory G. M. Ingram. Loretta’s favorite scripture is Psalm 91, and her favorite hymn is “I Know I’ve Been Changed.”
Loretta would use her testimony to help lead the unsaved to Christ. She enthusiastically used her spiritual gifts for Kingdom building by serving in many ministries at Quinn Chapel under the pastorship of the Rev. Dr. Natalie Mitchem, including the Ministerial Staff, Church School Superintendent and Teacher, Director of the Ministry of Evangelism, member of the Social Justice ministry, Parsonage Committee, Crystal Stream Cemetery Committee, Usher Board, Bible Study, and the Daughters of Sarah Women’s Fellowship.
Loretta was predeceased in death by her son, William JaiHeen Shonte Garrett, III; stepfather, Arthur Davis; and brother-in-law, Lawrence Keys.
Loretta is survived by her daughter, Tyree Brooks-NJ; mother, Ruth Scales-PA; father, Leon R. Scales, a brother, Terrance Scales-NJ; two sisters, Wendy Scales-PA, and Rev. Robyn Keys-NJ; a grandson, Ashante Worthy-NJ; a special niece, Shanelle Scales-PA, who selflessly traveled several times a week for many months to care for and be with Loretta; a special nephew, Lamont Scales-NJ; two great-grandchildren, Aubrey & Alexis Worthy-NJ; and a host of nieces, nephews, aunts, uncles, cousins, relatives and friends. Evangelist Loretta Scales has left a positive impact on those who knew and loved her. She will be forever missed and eternally loved.