Antelope Valley Press - AV Living (Antelope Valley)

Eagle Scout Nicholas Carson soars to new heights

- WRITTEN BY Julie Drake | Valley Press Staff Writer

Nicholas “Kaui” Carson earned his Eagle Scout rank at age 14. That was two years ago. He added another honor this year — Veterans of Foreign Affairs Scout of the Year 2020 for California.

Carson started with the Cub Scouts when he was in first grade. His motivation to earn his Eagle Scout rank by age 14 came from mother Meg McIlroy. She told him if he wanted to get his driver’s license when he turned 16 years old, he had to earn his Eagle Scout rank, first.

“Because guess what,” McIlroy said, “Gas, girls and whatever. When all that happens, they kind of forget scouts.”

Carson, 16, has his driver’s license.

For his Eagle Scout service project, he built two hanging wall planters and four benches for the Mental Health America Los Angeles’ Antelope Valley office in Lancaster. That also happens to be where McIlroy works.

“All of his life, he’s kind of had the understand­ing that people who have mental health (issues), they don’t ask for it, it just kind of happens,” McIlroy said.

Carson did his Eagle Scout project for transition­al-aged youth between 18 and 25. The project was for a tranquilit­y space, or a type of garden, where people experienci­ng anxiety could go to relax and calm down.

He is inspired by his mother, who earned a doctorate in nursing science while raising him as a single mother.

“I never have to tell him to do his homework,” McIlroy

said. “He is very self-starting as far as motivating, as far as doing projects.”

Asked what he most enjoys about the Boy Scouts, Carson said the camp-outs, friendship­s and relationsh­ips he has made.

“Now that I’m an Eagle Scout, I work with the younger scouts coming in, so I get to kind of guide them through their couple of ranks,” he said.

Carson has about 50 badges on his Boys Scout sash.

He is also part of the Antelope Valley Chapter of the Order of the Arrow, which is the youth-led leadership training organizati­on within the Valley.

Carson is a senior at Paraclete High School and has a 4.5 grade-point average. He also plays first base on the baseball team. He hopes to attend the U.S. Air Force Academy after graduation, but his second option is Embry–Riddle Aeronautic­al University. He would major in aeronautic­al engineerin­g and pursue a military career afterward.

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