An important cause
Monica Wolfe calls her younger son an old soul, a gentle giant. Like his father, there’s nothing he’d like more than to spend time in a cabin up in the mountains.
While Travis doesn’t go into detail about the drastic impact his father’s death had on him, his mother does. She talks about the way his grades plummeted, and he couldn’t find anything to care about in school.
Travis and books were never best friends to begin with — he’s always preferred doing things with his hands.
His mother is encouraged because he recently started talking about becoming a mechanic, either in the Army or Marines. He wants to work on tanks, jets or big trucks.
Throughout the past four years, the one constant in Travis’ life has been Scouting. He belongs to Boy Scout Troop 142, which is chartered by the Stafford chapter of the Izaak Walton League of America.
Lots of boys decide to build or clean up something for their Eagle Scout projects. Chuck Wolfe, who’s 22, adopted a nearby cemetery that he continues to maintain.
But the goal is community service, and Boy Scouts are turning more attention to suicide prevention, especially among teens, said Barbara Bendele, committee chair of Troop 142.
“Travis is on the cutting edge of this important social issue,” said Bendele, adding that he has spread the word through Stafford high schools and Boy Scout troops in the entire Aquia District, asking them to participate in Saturday’s walk.
Scouting for Food, an effort that started as an Eagle Scout project, has become a national event for Boy Scouts, and Bendele says “it would be amazing, powerful and poignant” if Travis began a campaign that also spread across the country.
It certainly is an important cause, she said.
“We have far too many loved ones,” she said, “especially teens, die each year while they are battling depression.”