Eagle Scouts and volunteers honored
special to The Star
March 3, 2002
Twenty-six Eagle Scouts and volunteers from the Choctaw Area Council, Boy Scouts of America, were honored recently during the annual Eagle Recognition and Scouter Appreciation Banquet.
Conducted in the Kahlmus Auditorium at the Mississippi State University-Meridian Campus, the event was attended by about 400 Scouters. During the banquet, Eagle Scouts were reminded that the foremost responsibility of an Eagle Scout is to live with honor.
Dr. Don Marascalco of Meridian was recognized and honored as the Eagle Class honoree. Marascalco, the council's immediate past president, also delivered the challenge to the new Eagle Scouts. He congratulated the Eagle Scouts and awarded them their Eagle neckerchief. He also asked them to wear their award with humility, be mindful that the Eagle Scout is looked upon to as an example. He concluded by reminding them that the Scout Oath and Scout Law should be their guide for today and tomorrow.
Each new Eagle Scout was also accompanied by his sponsor and mentor. Mentors were selected based on the Eagle Career Preference. The new Eagle Scouts and their mentors were: Daniel Bowles and the Rev. Michael Jones; Brandon Bridges and Lt. Col. Truitt Breazeale; Paul Cleveland and David Goldman; Benn Covington and Col. Joe H. Bryant; Thomas Comfort and Brad Kueven; Anthony DeVaughn and Tom Coats; Michael Edgerton and Dr. Lawrence Mason; James Everett and Billy Stubbs; James Farmer and John Walker; Hunter Futch and Bob Luke; John Gaskin and Dr. Harry Gibson; Andrew Havron and Dr. Britt McCarty; Thaddeu Hooper and Brian Finnegan; Jeremiah Jackson and Tommy Walters; David Johnson and Lt. Col. Craig Wells; Patrick Lofton and Bruce Wesson; Eric McWilliams and Councilman Jesse Palmer Sr.; James Nickell and Dr. Jason Read; Lucas Maxwell and Sharon Rhodes; Blakes Olmsted and Dr. Irvin Martin III; Bryan Roberts and Charles White; Eric Smith and Sgt. W. E. Pigott; Preston Speed and Jennie Cumbaugh; Dale Touchstone Jr. and Dr. Sonny Rush; Troy White III and SSg. Christopher Arthur; Edward Yeatman III and Jerry Hobgood.
On average, it takes a Scout approximately three years in order to earn this award.
Marascalco recognized the many Scouting volunteers on hand for the occasion. He expressed his sincere appreciation to each and everyone of them for giving of their time and talent
Eagle Scout Andrew Havron of Troop 9 in Meridian delivered the Eagle Scout response on behalf of all 26 Eagles. He said Scouting is an organization that was designed to prepare boys for the tough road ahead known as " The Real World." It was designed to instill in the many qualities that they; will need in order to survive in this world.
He went on to say that less than 2 percent of Scouts involved in the Scouting program each year ever earn the Eagle Scout Award.
Three outstanding Scouting leaders were singled out as recipients of the Silver Beaver Award, including Bob Hamlett of Meridian, Olin Thomas and John Walker of Decatur.. Executive board member Jack E. Stack Jr. said the Silver Beaver Award is made annually for noteworthy service of exceptional character Boyhood. Stack said the Silver Beaver Award is the highest award a local Scout Council may bestow on an adult Scouter.