Eagle Court of Honor for Viking Patrol, and Thank You!
Kade Killeen, Jacob Belisle, Michael Beem, Daniel Vidaurri, William Ward, Thomas Reilly and Alex Brown, along with their families, celebrated together achieving the Eagle Rank on Friday, July 30th, in the chapel of Trinity Episcopal School. They chose to hold the event as a group experience to emphasize their cohesiveness as a patrol. When it came time to decide on what their Eagle projects were going to be, they made a group decision to address homelessness in the Austin area by constructing improvements at the Community First Village (CFV) on Hog Eye Road in East Austin, a program nationally recognized as one of the best at solving the homeless crisis. Five of the seven Scouts began Scouting in the Trinity Pack in the First Grade.
Kade Killeen earned his Eagle and Bronze Palm. He constructed a rainwater collection system at CFV as his Eagle Project. He graduated from St. Michael's this past Spring, and is entering the Massachusetts Institute of Technology this Fall, and will play basketball there in addition to his studies. Kade has been a strong leader in the patrol, and has modeled the concept of there being no "I" in "team" on every camp-out and project.
Jacob Belisle earned the Eagle with bronze, gold, and silver palms. He built and installed bat boxes at CFV for natural mosquito control. Jacob has always given 110% in all of the activities and events over the years, and is an enthusiastic, encouraging, and trustworthy member. Jacob is starting his senior year at The McCallie School, Chattanooga, Tennessee.
Michael Beem earned Bronze Eagle Palms. He lead lead the construction of planters for a container garden at CFV for his Eagle Project. He has been consistently participated in all of the Troop's activities over the years, and is a great cook, golfer, and friend. He is starting his Senior year at Westlake High School this fall.
Daniel Vidaurri earned his Bronze palms; for his Eagle Project, he installed a garden at CFV. Daniel was a founding member of both the Trinity Cub Scout Pack and Troop, and has been present and active in all Troop activities. He has earned his pilot's license, and regularly flies Cessna aircraft to improve his skills. He will be returning to St. Andrew's High School this fall as a Senior.
Thomas Reilly earned Bronze, Gold, and Silver Eagle Palms, and both of his younger brothers are members of the Troop. He installed solar powered electrical outdoor lighting at CFV for his Eagle Project. He returns as a Senior to Austin High School this Fall.
William Ward earned his Bronze Palms, and installed outdoor solar powered electrical lighting for a barbeque area at CFV. William is a founding member of both the Trinity Cub Scout Pack and Troop. He will be starting his Senior year at LASA this fall.
Alex Brown earned his Bronze and Gold Eagle Palms. He constructed a rainwater collection system on a building a CFV as his Eagle Project. The BSA National Court of Honor awarded Alex the Lifesaving and Meritorious Action Award for rescuing a drowning man at South Padre Island in 2017. The Bee Cave District also awarded Alex the Bee Cave District Scout of the Year Award for 2019. Alex returns a a Senior to the Anderson High School International Baccalaureate program this fall. He is a a founding member of both the Trinity Cub Scout Pack and Troop, and is active in his church as a reader and guitar player.
Johnny Bennett, also in the Viking Patrol, was the first to earn his Eagle rank two years ago. Life Scout Hudson Quinn was a founding member of both the Pack and Troop, and distinguished himself as a leader for everyone in the Patrol and Troop.
The past 11 years have been, for me, nothing short of amazing; each of you parents of these guys is why. Each of you has been present every step of the way, from planning and fund-raising, to tracking progress in the program, to teaching and being physically present for meetings, camp-outs, summer camps and trips. Tammy has put in hours as the Troop Committee Chair and more recently as the Eagle Advisor and was there on many camp-outs. Sara tracked and organized advancement as the Troop Advancement Chair, and did her share of camping. Missy planned, organized, and supported numerous activities. Laura came up with the annual poinsettia sale worked on the Troop Committee. Tere served on the Troop Committee, and Kris came up with the idea of starting both the Pack and Troop, planned our first summer adventure to Yellowstone, and has taught the Horsemanship merit badge to this patrol and others. Karen taught the Swimming merit badge, and conducted the annual swimming badge, for both this patrol and the whole Troop several times in addition to her time on the Troop Committee and working on fund raising projects; Robert has been there for many a mulch delivery. Merritt has been there for summer camps, and teaching. Graham's presence and supervision on every summer adventure and most every camp-out (including the ones at his ranch) and his muscle on mulch deliveries, has been incredible. Alan was there for the meetings and camp-outs, from the Cub Scouts forward. Tito has been there for every camp-out and summer adventure since 2010, and has done his share of teaching and supervision. Jennifer and Laura hiked the Pacific Crest Trail with me and Graham; Tammy, Missy and others were there as the "ground crew". Kendall taught, hiked and camped, as did Rich. There is no fair or complete way to acknowledge or thank each of you enough, and if it weren't for each of you, none of these wonderful times that for most of us began when these young men were first-graders, would have been possible.
"What Scouting Means to Me"
From an Eagle Scout when he was a Tenderfoot
In 2016, our Troop attended Camp Cherry Valley on Catalina Island. One of the activities required our patrol leader to give a short talk on what scouting meant to him. Ours, a rising seventh grader, offered the following:
"Benjamin Franklin once said: 'tell me and I will forget; teach me and I might remember; but involve me and I will understand'. That is what Scouting means to me- being involved means you understand things. If you take the Oath where is says to be 'physically strong, mentally awake, and morally straight', you really don't understand what it means until you are involved. You don't know how important it is to be physically strong until you carry a 30 pound backpack up a 1,000 foot mountainside. You don't know what it means to be mentally awake until you have to put up your tent in freezing cold rain on that mountain, in the dark. You don't know what it means to be morally straight until you have to stop a friend from doing something dangerous. That is what Scouting means to me- involve me and I will understand".