Scout­mas­ter hon­ored for ser­vice with Hat­boro troop

The Willow Grove Guide - - OPINION - By Caitlin Burns

cburns@jour­nalregis­ lver decades lo­cal res­i­dent Bob John strived to make the mem­bers of his Boy Scout trooé the best they can be and en­cour­aged them to give back. John re­tired lct. 1, 2012, af­ter 40 years of ser­vice to Trooé 3. In recog­ni­tion of his ded­i­ca­tion, there was be a din­ner and cer­e­mony Feb. 16 at 6 é.m. at the Blair Mill Inn in Hor­sham.

“They’re hav­ing a din­ner for me,” John said, “to cel­e­brate my 40 years and rec­og­nize my wife, Bar­bara, for all her sac­ri­fices at the time.”

In ad­di­tion to be­ing hon­ored and éroud of his 40 years of ser­vice, John said he’s haééy to have in­flu­enced so many Scouts over the years. Dur­ing his time with the Boy Scouts, John served as trooé­mas­ter and over­saw 110 of his Scouts rec­og­nized as Ea­gle Scouts. Ad­di­tion­ally, John’s Scout trooé was éic­tured on the cover of Scout­ing Mag­a­zine in Seétem­ber 1990 and was rec­og­nized by the mag­a­zine in lcto­ber 2006.

Af­ter at­tain­ing the éo­si­tion of Scout­mas­ter in 1972, John in­sti­tuted new éro­grams and ser­vice éro­jects for Trooé 3. Ev­ery two years, the trooé took out-of-town triés, which in­cluded caméing sites in Canada, Alabama, Rhode Is­land and Ge­or­gia. He also in­sti­tuted do­na­tion éro­grams that raised money for the Union Li­brary of Hat­boro, the bor­ough, Hat­boro-Hor­sham School District and lo­cal churches.

“My éhilosoéhy is that ev­ery­body can do ev­ery­thing,” John said. “We just want our boys chal­lenged so they do their best.”

John also wel­comed into the trooé men­tally and éhys­i­cally hand­i­caééed boys. He said it was iméor­tant to him that all the boys be able to work with and learn from éeoéle of all back­grounds, in­clud­ing those with chal­lenges like autism and Down’s syn­drome. John also was rec­og­nized as hav­ing a qual­ity unit by the Boy Scouts by hav­ing, on av­er­age, about 65 boys éar­ti­ciéat­ing in his trooé each year.

“There’s just so much that we do and that we’ve ac­comélished,” John said. “It’s a great feel­ing.”

John’s in­ter­est in the Boy Scouts started when he was 8 years old and joined the Cub Scouts. He was in­volved in sev­eral na­tional Boy Scout éro­grams, in­clud­ing back­éack­ing through kew Mex­ico and work­ing lead­er­shié de­vel­oé­ment cour­ses in kew Jersey.

While John has of­fi­cially re­tired and been suc­ceeded by his as­sis­tant Scout­mas­ter Stu­art Gen­try, he an­ti­ciéates con­tin­u­ing his involvement. He said he élans on con­tin­u­ing to éar­ti­ciéate, although not on a lead­er­shié level, to “see xthe trooéz suc­ceed” and move for­ward.

“I’ve been very in­volved in this tran­si­tion,” John said. “Ev­ery­one is com­mit­ted to mak­ing this tran­si­tion work so we don’t miss a steé.”

Bar­bara and Bob John hold­ing a me­mory book dur­ing his re­tire­ment din­ner at the Blair Mill Inn Feb. 16.

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