Everyone speaks well of the Boy Scouts. One in four boys joins the Boy Scouts. Of every hundred who join, thirty drop out. But even those who drop out claim they learn something enjoyable or valuable from scouts.
Only four percent of scouts per year go on to attain the highest ranking in scouting, Eagle Scout. I am proud to present my grandson, as one of those honored few.
An Eagle Scout must earn 21 meritorious service badges to attain Eagle ranking. The skills are demanding, and challenging.
An Eagle earns badges from a surprising array of personal services such as Orienteering, Camping, Lifesaving, Swimming, Public Speaking, Canoeing, Swimming, Environmental Studies, Art, Emergency Preparedness, Soil and Water Conservation, Community, National and World Citizenship. He pledges to conduct himself with honesty, clean living, useful citizenship and honest work.
Scouting is changing, the challenges are different, but the total development from boyhood to manhood depends
upon physical, mental, and moral growth expressed in the Scout Oath. Add to that the many activities and interests clamoring for young people’s attention, computers, gaming, the demands of school and sports, band and music, discovering girls and driving. Preparing for college and jobs. It isn’t surprising that so many drop out and so few tread the road to complete the course from Cub Scout to Eagle. The Eagle Scout badge stands for strength of character. The Eagle Scout badge is a symbol of what a boy has done, but, more important, it represents what the boy
will be in the future as he grows to manhood.
An Eagle Scout is a marked man, he has earned the right to call himself a quality citizen. He pledges not to exploit his fellow man, but dedicate his skills and abilities to the common good. I can’t say strongly enough how proud our collective family is of this young man. And, he has stellar company among some famous Eagles Scouts:
Thirty-three astronauts, President Gerald Ford, Secretary of Defense, Robert McNamara, Pulitzer Prize winning authors, Wallace Stegner and Harrison Salisberg. Five members of the House of Representatives, Three Senators, Two Governors. Journalist Walter Cronkite, film maker Steven Spielberg, Generals, Heroic Soldiers, Great Sportsmen…the list goes on and on. Scouting gives us faith in the future of this country.