Troop 1631 gets new Ea­gle Scouts

Record Observer - - News - By DOUG BISHOP dbishop@kibay­times.com

STEVENSVILLE — Boy Scout Troop 1631, spon­sored by Christ Epis­co­pal Church of Kent Is­land, re­cently hosted an Ea­gle Court of Honor for three of its mem­bers: Erik Wil­liam Fehren­bacher, Bran­don Matthew Gross and Ja­cob Pre­ston Weaver. The pro­gram took place in­side the chapel of the church.

The Ea­gle Scout Award is the high­est recog­ni­tion a young man can achieve in the Boy Scouts of Amer­ica or­ga­ni­za­tion. Re­mark­ably, only 3 to 4 per­cent of all boys who join Scouting ac­tu­ally earn the award, which truly dis­tin­guishes and sets apart those who do achieve it.

To earn their Ea­gle, each boy must earn a min­i­mum of 21 merit badges, 11 of those are spe­cific “Ea­gle re­quired” badges, and the other 10 are of the boy’s in­di­vid­ual choice, usu­ally ones the Scout has a per­sonal in­ter­est in, sports, hob­bies or even ca­reeror­i­ented badges. The Scout also has to serve within his troop in sev­eral dif­fer­ent lead­er­ship as­sign­ments dur­ing his years of pro­gress­ing through the ranks, be­gin­ning as a “Ten­der­foot” Scout, then Sec­ond Class, First Class, Star, and Life ranks, be­fore be­com­ing el­i­gi­ble to pur­sue the Ea­gle rank.

Once achiev­ing Life rank, the boy can plan and organize an ap­proved Ea­gle Scout Project that must ben­e­fit the com­mu­nity. Fol­low­ing com­ple­tion of the Ea­gle Project, the boy sub­mits his pa­per­work to have an Ea­gle Board of Re­view, where trained adult lead­ers re­view his Scout records, and he is per­son­ally in­ter­viewed by the Board mem­bers. Upon ap­proval from the for­mal Board of Re­view, he is pro­vided a Court of Honor where is Ea­gle Award is pre­sented.

Each of these young men ac­com­plished these re­quire­ments. Bran­don earned a to­tal of 31 merit badges; Ja­cob, 27; and Erik, 25.

When asked in­di­vid­u­ally which merit badge was the most en­joy­able, all three said “Wilder­ness Sur­vival.” It was very much a high ad­ven­ture ex­pe­ri­ence camp­ing out­side overnight with noth­ing other than what na­ture pro­vided and the boys’ cre­ativ­ity — no tent or other “crea­ture com­forts” al­lowed.

Which merit badge was most chal­leng­ing? Erik and Ja­cob both said the “Cook­ing” merit badge, as the re­quire­ments have re­cently changed and be­come more rig­or­ous, and it is now an Ea­gle re­quired badge. Bran­don said “Per­sonal Man­age­ment” was most chal­leng­ing to him.

“I had never been taught to work with a bud­get be­fore,” he said. He in­di­cated he wished they of­fered a course like it in school so stu­dents could have a more re­al­is­tic knowl­edge of what it takes to live in the real world.

The most in­ter­est­ing or mem­o­rable Scouting ex­pe­ri­ence in all their years? It was unan­i­mous — “Philmont Scout Ranch in New Mex­ico.”

Bran­don said, “I rec­om­mend ev­ery Scout to ex­pe­ri­ence that!”

All three were awed by the majesty of the moun­tains and ma­jes­tic views, “morn­ing and night” as the sun rose and set.

Ja­cob called it “truly the ul­ti­mate Scout ex­pe­ri­ence.”

Erick said, “I will never for­get the views we saw and the mem­o­ries I shared.”

As their Court of Honor con­cluded, each pre­sented “Men­tor Pins” to those who were per­son­ally cho­sen as MVPs in their Scouting ca­reers. All pre­sented Scout leader Keith Ful­mer with a pin, de­scrib­ing him as “amaz­ing,” “my first Scout­mas­ter” and “a sec­ond fa­ther when my own dad, oc­ca­sion­ally, couldn’t al­ways be there”.

Men­tor pins were also pre­sented to: Calvin Martin, Ja­son Bai­ley, Evans Heath, Brid­gette Bai­ley, and all three of the boy’s fa­thers: Brian Weaver, Dave Fehren­bacher and Chris Gross. All three boys said they rec­og­nized how for­tu­nate they have been to have such tremen­dous adult sup­port and guid­ance on their trails to Ea­gle.

PHOTO BY DOUG BISHOP

Three Life Scouts, all mem­bers of Boy Scout Troop 1631, spon­sored by Christ Epis­co­pal Church in Stevensville, re­cently were pre­sented their Ea­gle Scout Awards, from the left, Erick Wil­liam Fehren­bacher, Ja­cob Pre­ston Weaver and Bran­don Matthew Gross. Though pre­sented in­di­vid­u­ally, these three Scouts de­cided to hold their Ea­gle Court of Honor to­gether.

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