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Friday, July 3, 2015

Proud moment when grandson receives Eagle Scout award; also brings back many fond memories

Grandson Denver receives Eagle Scout award, the Boy Scout's  highest honor

Many youngsters first experienced camping and the many wonders of the great outdoors through Scouting, which started back in 1911 and continues today.
Back more than a half century this old writer was first involved in Scouting and later was an adult leader. My wife, Phyllis, was a Girl Scout leader, and son, Erik and daughter, Michelle, both were Scouts. Michelle advanced to a Gold Bar, the highest rank or award in Girl Scouts.
So, it was a proud day Sunday, when grandson, Denver, was honored with the Eagle Scout award.
Eagle Scout is the highest rank attainable in the Boy Scouting program of the Boy Scouts of America (BSA). Requirements include earning at least 21 merit badges and demonstrating Scout Spirit through the Boy Scout Oath and Law, service, and leadership. This includes an extensive service project that the Scout plans, organizes, leads, and manages. 
Eagle Scouts are presented with a medal and a badge that visibly recognizes the accomplishments of the Scout. Additional recognition can be earned through Eagle Palms, awarded for completing additional tenure, leadership, and merit badge requirements.
Historically, the BSA's highest award was originally conceived as the Wolf Scout, as shown in the June 1911 Official Handbook for Boys. The August 1911 version of the handbook changed this to Eagle Scout. 
Although more than two million young men have earned the Eagle award, that is just slightly over two percent of those who begin the Scout journey.
Scouting is much more than obtaining badges. It is about learning leadership, becoming self-reliant, and also learning about the importance of community, nation and the world.
And while Scouting has changed over the years to involve a broader range of interests and skills, the Boy Scouts still have a heavy involvement in the outdoors and related activities.
Grandson Denver was awarded Eagle during ceremonies conducted for him by his Troop 306 in Hendricks County, In. He joined the troop in August of 2010.
Denver, who will be a senior this fall at Danville High School, attained the rank of troop Quartermaster for several terms as well as patrol leader and assistant senior patrol leader.
Currently, he is a member of the Firecraft organization (involves learning in-depth outdoor skills), and has achieved the Order of the Arrow, and has attended summer camp at four different camps as well as Philmont Camp in New Mexico.
Although Eagle Scout requires 21 badges, including 15 mandatory, Denver now has completed 27 badges, and will qualify for Eagle Palms.
My Scouting experience only took me to the rank of Second Class Scout (maybe First Class) before I moved on to Sea Scouts, which I think no longer exists. It was an early type of Explorers, which comes for older youth interested in continuing their Scouting experience.
And while I never rose far in the Scouting ranks, the memories of Scouting days are still numerous and in my old head. It was there I obtained my first camping experience and learned campfire cooking at a campout at Frazier’s Farm.
I still can’t tie knots, but don’t think those memories will ever slip away.

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