Danny “Dano” Scofield, 38, confirmed victim of shooting spree, remembered as a genuine and loving artist
Danny Scofield wasn’t supposed to be in Lakewood on Monday evening. He was supposed to be on his way to Kansas to surprise his mother for a late Christmas celebration, his younger sister April Potter said.
But after receiving a COVID vaccine shot, Scofield, Dano to his friends, started to show some symptoms, Potter said. Since he wasn’t sure whether he was falling ill or feeling side effects from the shot, he decided to postpone the trip.
“It broke both of our hearts. He told me it would be OK and that we would see each other soon,” Potter said. “I didn’t know that would be the last time I spoke to him.”
Scofield, 38, died Monday evening, one of several victims of a shooting spree that began near the intersection of East First Avenue and Broadway in Denver and ended in Lakewood where the suspect was shot and killed. Scofield had two daughters and a son.
To think of her brother now, though, Potter said she need only look at different parts of her body. Her leg, ankle and ribs all bear his artwork, tattoos of elephants, a phoenix and stars. For a sleeve, Scofield tattooed a mix of flowers and water.
“On the top, he picked lilies, my favorite flower. The bottom part is all different flowers, birth flowers from the months that our family members were born,” Potter said.
That type of artwork – turning memories or visions into something physical – drew Scofield in, Potter said.
“This was the dream he followed and he gave it his all,” Potter said. “Everyone has a story behind their tattoos and he really liked bringing those out.”
On social media and in messages to The Denver Post, friends of Scofield gave thanks for the time they had with him and took stock of the work he had done for them. People described him as genuine, hilarious, ambitious, versatile, selfless and, of course, artistic.
Annie Bagford Schechter said most of her tattoos came from Scofield and her favorite is a sleeve of hippopotamuses on her arm. She recalled late-night sessions where they’d talk about movies and music and she loved to crochet hats for him.
“He cherished them and made me feel like my work mattered,” Bagford Schechter said, noting that she was still in shock from the news of her friend’s death.
Scofield, who grew up in Thornton, had always been able to pick up a pencil or a paintbrush and make anything “magical,” give it his own spin, Potter said. He liked to create things that made people feel better and that, in turn, made him feel good.
In particular, Scofield loved the horror genre, Potter said, especially classics like Halloween, Chuckie and Jason. Most of their family members – their mother, father, a step-brother and his brother-in-law – all have a tattoo by him, she said.
His passion shined through his work and his clients reflected it back to him, Potter said. Many followed him from place to place, reluctant, or even refusing, to get a tattoo by anyone else.
One loyalist was Matty Metzger, who estimated that Scofield did 90% of the tattoos on his body. They met in 2008 at GBA Tattoo, Metzger said, when he was a piercing apprentice and Scofield was a tattoo apprentice.
“We have been close ever since,” Metzger said. “He was the most gentle soul I ever met, always kind and full of love.”
Metzger said he was at Lucky 13 Tattoo and Piercing, where Scofield worked, on Monday night getting a tattoo and must have left just minutes before the shooting. He can’t imagine why someone would have shot his friend.
Scofield was there through hard times, Metzger said. He never judged and helped his friends realize that they were never alone. He played that role for Potter too, she said. No matter how difficult a situation might be, Scofield was there to tell her everything would be all right, to brighten her day.
“Who’s going to brighten my day now?” she asked.
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