They build pinewood derby cars, sell popcorn and learn to set up camp. The Boy Scouts of America are celebrating a century of unique opportunities.
In Naperville, scouting’s as popular as ever. Nationally only about 5% of scouts actually make it to the rank of Eagle. But this year, all the boys in the Illini Patrol in local Troop 222 received the honor together.
“I’ve grown up with Boy Scouts and the Cub Scouts and so it’s kind of becoming ingrained in who am,” said Eagle Scout Kevin Fitzsimmons.
“It’s something that I can talk about to my kids or my grandkids when that time comes,” said Eagle Scout Ben Hui.
In order to achieve the rank of Eagle, scouts must plan and carry out a community service project from start to finish. Kevin Fitzsimmons planted aquatic plants and tall grass to prevent erosion in a retention pond at the Heritage Knolls subdivision near Naper Boulevard. Fellow Eagle Ben Hui built benches for the not-for-profit Feed My Starving Children, as well as a set of ramps for its delivery trucks.
“They’re a blessing for us,” said Joel Howells, Mobile Packing Supervisor for Feed My Starving Children. “For the trucks to be able to drive up onto the ramps, it just makes it easier for our staff to load the trucks.”
The first Eagle Scout from Troop 222 is Scott Faith, who received the Eagle badge in 1992. He gave the invocation at this year’s ceremony.
“I think scouting’s founded on principals that are just so solid, things that are part of our country, part of what our youth should be, and what I think every person should strive should be,” said Faith.
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