Eagle Scout Scott Berger Takes Us Inside the CBS Evening News
THE OFFICIAL MAGAZINE FOR EAGLE SCOUTS
Eagle Scout Scott Berger Takes Us
Inside the CBS Evening News
ALSO IN THIS ISSUE:
Eagle Shares Stories of Wartime Heroism
Cub Scouting Prepared to Change
Remembering the Blue Dog Man
5/28/14 10:19 AM
Are you looking for a gift for a new Eagle
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- Eagle Scout courts of honor
- Birthdays and holidays
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Jamboree Belt Buckle
At the 2010 National Scout
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On the Cover
Scott Berger remains alert and
ready to react in the control room,
where the Eagle Scout and associate
director serves as an air traffic
controller for hundreds of video
clips and images appearing in the
CBS Evening News with Scott Pelley.
Photo by W. Garth Dowling.
Boy Scouts of America
President of the United States Barack Obama
Honorary President of the Boy Scouts of America
Robert M. Gates ............................ National President
Tico Perez .................................National Commissioner
Wayne Brock ............................. Chief Scout Executive
National Eagle Scout Association
Glenn A. Adams ........................................... President
C. William “Bill” Steele ................................ Director
Rick Bragga, Dr. David Briscoe, Howard Bulloch,
Nick Dannemiller, Clark W. Fetridge, Marshall
Hollis, Dr. Ken King, Dr. Michael Manyak,
Lou Paulson, Rich Pfaltzgraff, Todd R. Plotner,
Congressman Pete Sessions, Frank Tsuru,
FROM TOP: W. GARTH DOWLING; COURTESY OF HBO AND THE PROGERIA RESEARCH FOUNDATION; COURTESY OF THE BUTLER FAMILY; COURTESY OF VALOR STUDIOS
Regents consist of more than 600 life members of NESA
who are recipients of the Distinguished Eagle Scout Award.
Lois Albertus, Johnny D. Boggs, Teresa Brown,
Keith Courson, Ryan Larson, Jeff Laughlin,
Making the News By Bryan Wendell
Step inside the control room of the CBS Evening
News as Eagle Scout Scott Berger reveals what goes
into the making of each broadcast. Learn how the
associate director juggles a 24-hour news cycle with
the responsibilities of a dedicated Scouter.
SUBSCRIPTION INFORMATION AND CUSTOMER SERVICE
Eagle Scout Magazine (ISSN 0890-4995) is published four times a year by the
Boy Scouts of America, 1325 W. Walnut Hill Lane, P.O. Box 152079, Irving, TX
75015-2079. Issues are Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter. Copyright © 2014 by the
Boy Scouts of America. All rights thereunder reserved; anything appearing in
Eagle Scout Magazine may not be reprinted either wholly or in part without
written permission. NESA accepts all articles from members for submission,
but because of space limitations and dated material, we are not always able
to use all materials. We cannot return articles or photographs submitted for
consideration. For detailed submission guidelines, go to nesa.org. Application
to mail at periodicals postage prices is pending at Irving, Texas, and at additional mailing offices. Address changes: [email protected] Include
your name, new and old addresses, birth date and the number printed above
your name on the address label. Send other correspondence to NESA, S322
Boy Scouts of America, 1325 W. Walnut Hill Lane, P.O. Box 152079, Irving, TX
75015-2079 or [email protected]
Printed and bound by Quad/Graphics.
Bond of Brothers By Mark Ray
Brothers and Eagle Scouts Adam and Bryan Makos
publish Valor, a magazine that celebrates American
veterans. Read how their passion for stories of
heroism led to Adam’s book, A Higher Call.
Lenore Bonno ............................. Production Manager
Marcie Rodriguez .................................Imaging Artist
Judy Bramlett ............................... Circulation Director
Barry Brown ................................. Advertising Director
Kenneth Lipka .............Regional Advertising Manager
Patricia Santangelo .....Regional Advertising Manager
Cheryl Solomon ................... Midwest Publisher’s Rep
Chuck Carroll ..................West Coast Publisher’s Rep
Lisa Hott....................Advertising Production Manager
VOL. 40, NO. 2
Michael Goldman........................... Editorial Director
Bryan Wendell ........................................ Senior Editor
Gretchen Sparling ............................ Associate Editor
Elizabeth Hardaway Morgan ..... Senior Art Director
W. Garth Dowling.................... Photography Director
Edna J. Lemons........................................ Photo Editor
Bryan Wursten .........................................Online Editor
2 News From the Trailhead
22 Closing Shot
Visit NESA online to submit your
Eagle Scout projects, see more Eagle
achievements, complete scholarship
information and more.
5/21/14 9:57 AM
News From the Trailhead
Glenn A. Adams
C. William Steele
From the President
Common experience. Uncommon experiences. I recently had two great opportunities to understand and share the
universal qualities that make Scouting great in all nations. Earlier this year, the World Scouting Foundation and Saudi
Scouting invited me to Saudi Arabia. This proved to be a great opportunity to experience the shared love of Scouting
between the U.S. and Saudi Arabia.
I presented a “check” for 10.6 million hours of service — the cumulative service hours of all Eagle projects during 2013 —
to Prince Khalid Al-Faisal bin Abdullah Al-Saud, the new minister of education, under whose guidance Saudi Scouting and
the Messengers of Peace program is flourishing. I also had the chance to meet hundreds of Saudi Scouts and experience their
deep and genuine friendship toward the BSA and America. Dr. Hamad
Alyahya, Prince Khalid and many other Scouts and Scouters became
friends because of our shared common experiences in Scouting.
In addition to my time in Saudi Arabia, I made a separate journey to
France and the U.K., a trip initiated by the BSA’s National Foundation,
for which I have the privilege of serving as a trustee. This trip was to
honor and remember the sacrifices made by servicemen and women of
many nations 70 years ago as they stormed the beaches of Normandy to
help defeat fascism. The Trans-Atlantic Council (TAC) was the gracious
host of this event. Scout Executive Vince Cozzone and his outstanding
board of volunteers, headed by Council President Lt. Gen. Mark
Schissler, ably lead TAC.
I had the opportunity to represent NESA and all Eagle Scouts by
giving the Eagle Charge to 32 new Eagle Scouts at their Court of Honor
on Omaha Beach, one of the two American landing sites, and where
the American military suffered its highest casualty rates on June 6, 1944. We then had a wonderful memorial service at the
Normandy American Cemetery near Omaha Beach, where more than 9,300 American military personnel are laid to rest. It
was an incredibly moving experience for the thousands in attendance.
At the end of the service, we placed tulips on the gravesites. My flower was placed on Benson C. Adams’ (no relation)
gravesite, a technical sergeant in the 121st Infantry, 8th Division, from Georgia. He died on July 27, 1944. There are only
two or three people with the last name Adams in the entire cemetery, and he died in the same month I was born (different
year), so the fact that I randomly selected his marker from 9,387 will remain with me for the rest of my days.
A visit to Brownsea Island, home of the first Scouting encampment in 1907, and the chance to actually hold Lord BadenPowell’s six-bead strand of Wood Badge beads, capped off a trip of uncommon experiences. I was so proud and humbled
to be part of the group that represented your National Council at these events. Everywhere we go in this world is an
opportunity to share the common experiences and values of Scouting, and that transcends cultural, political and religious
From the Eagle trail,
Glenn A. Adams
5/19/14 10:00 AM
MEMBERS // Improvements to Cub Scouting / FAQs for Eagle Project Beneficiaries
Less Talk, More Action
leaders keep Scouts focused on the activities and less likely to be distracted or, even
Besides offering a little less talk, the new
program also promises a lot less jargon.
The current program is a sometimes
bewildering array of beads, belt loops and
badges. For example, Wolves and Bears earn
red beads as they complete achievements,
gold and silver Arrow Points as they complete electives (gold for the first 10 electives
Cub Scouting is preparing to improve its advancement program.
or its 85th birthday next year,
Cub Scouting is getting an
extreme makeover. After three
years of work, a task force of
volunteers and professionals
recently introduced a new advancement
program that promises
boys a little less talk
and a lot more action.
Cub Scouts will still
earn the Tiger, Wolf,
Bear, Webelos and Arrow of Light awards,
but the building blocks
for those awards will
be all new. (Bobcat,
which new Cub Scouts
earn, remains essentially unchanged.) Rank
advancement for Tigers,
Wolves and Bears calls
for six required adventures and one elective adventure of the Cub Scout’s or den’s
choice. Webelos and Arrow of Light call
for four required adventures and three
To earn a rank, a boy will complete a
combination of seven core and elective
adventures. Each adventure is designed
to span about three den meetings, so
achieving a rank should take most of the
year. And since each year offers 13 elective
adventures, boys can keep learning and
earning all year long.
The word “adventure” is an important
one, says Eagle Scout Ken King, a member
of the Cub Adventure Team and associate professor of elementary education at
Roosevelt University. “A proverb states, ‘I
hear, and I forget. I see, and I remember.
I do, and I understand,’ ” King says. “We
know that boys of Cub Scout age learn
best when they do things in a hands-on
manner. Doing interesting things helps
with the learning, but it also helps den
and silver for each additional set of 10) and
belt loops and pins in the separate Academics and Sports Program. And that’s just
how Wolves and Bears advance. Tigers and
Webelos Scouts follow completely different
In the new program, each rank will
use the same system of core and elective
adventures. The best of the Academics and
Sports Program will be rolled into the
adventures, and boys will receive consistent and immediate recognition items
across the program. Stay tuned for even
The new program, which was unveiled
at May’s 2014 National Annual Meeting,
will become effective with the 2015-2016
program year. At the same time, Cub
Scouts will begin using the Scout Oath
and Scout Law under the One Oath, One
Cub Scouting’s extreme makeover is
the result of the BSA’s 2011-2015 Strategic Plan, which called for ensuring that
programs are “appealing, exciting and
culturally relevant.” We’ll cover the changes
to Boy Scouting (which are minor) and
Venturing (which are major) in the fall
issue of Eagles’ Call.
Eagle Project FAQ
Need-to-Know Information for Project Beneficiaries
Before a Scout can do his Eagle Scout
service project, he must find a religious
institution, school or community to assist
and — just as important — help that
beneficiary understand the complexities
of an Eagle project. Groups that haven’t
previously worked with Eagle candidates
rarely understand what sorts of projects are
acceptable and how the process works.
To facilitate understanding, NESA has
created a downloadable PDF (available at
bit.ly/eagleprojectinfo) called “Navigating the
Eagle Scout Service
for Project Beneficiaries.”
It explains everything a beneficiary needs to know to support an Eagle
Scout candidate. Fundraising, permitting,
safety and supervision are all covered, as are
limitations on potential projects.
Eagle Scout candidates face plenty of
hurdles as they work on their Eagle projects.
The new beneficiary guide makes the first
of those hurdles a little easier to clear.
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5/6/14 1:55 PM
MEMBERS // The BSA’s New President / A Musical Salute to Eagle Moms
Eagle Scout, Former Defense Chief
Now Leads BSA
U.S. DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE
obert M. Gates, who became
the BSA’s volunteer president
at May’s National Annual
Meeting, is no stranger to
Scouting. A Distinguished
Eagle Scout, Gates served as NESA’s
president for a decade beginning in 1997,
leaving that position to become President
George W. Bush’s secretary of defense.
Gates served as defense secretary from
2006 to 2011 and was the first person to
be asked by a newly elected president to remain in that role. And Presidents Bush and
Barack Obama are just two of the eight
U.S. presidents he served under. Among
his other posts: director of the Central
Intelligence Agency from 1991 to 1993,
the first time an entry-level CIA employee
reached that position.
Gates has also been a leader in higher
education. From 2002 to 2006, he served
as president of Texas A&M University,
where he increased minority enrollment
and actively recruited Eagle Scouts and
recipients of Girl Scouting’s Gold Award.
He also serves as chancellor of the College
of William & Mary.
Gates became an Eagle Scout in 1958.
Not long after that he traveled to Philmont
Scout Ranch to participate in the National
Junior Leader Training Camp. He has halfjokingly called it the only management
training he ever needed.
A native of Wichita, Kan., Gates holds
a doctorate in Russian and Soviet history
from Georgetown University. He’s the
recipient of numerous honors, including
the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the
National Security Medal, the Presidential
Citizens Medal and the Distinguished
In accepting the role of BSA president,
Gates reflected on his own experience. “As
an Eagle Scout, I know firsthand how impactful this program can be, and I believe
its mission is more important today than
ever before,” he said. “I am honored to take
on this role and look forward to working
on behalf of the millions of youth and
adult members who make Scouting what it
is today — an organization providing lifechanging opportunities to today’s youth.”
Download the song after completing
an online Eagle Scout survey.
Last year marked the 100th anniversary of
Scouting’s partnership with the Church
of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. To
celebrate the occasion, the church hosted
an October extravaganza in Salt Lake City
that was viewed by nearly 1.2 million
people around the world.
For the Eagle Scouts in that massive
audience, the highlight of the show may
have been the song “Ma, You Earned Your
Eagle,” a funny-but-true homage to the
countless mothers whose inspiration and
perspiration help fuel their sons’ achieve-
ment of Scouting’s highest rank.
If you or your favorite Eagle mom
missed the show, check out the video at
bit.ly/eaglemoms. The song is also available
as a free MP3 download for Eagle Scout
candidates who complete an online survey
that is accessible from the Eagle Scout Rank
Members_ES_14SU .indd 4
5/21/14 7:45 AM
NESA Committee Spotlight / Funds for College / Eagle Class of 2013 // MEMBERS
Greater New York Councils
New York, N.Y.
While not every Eagle Scout goes to college,
those who do are usually better prepared
than their peers. That’s why colleges across
the country provide scholarships to Eagle
Scouts (as does NESA, which awards more
than 200 scholarships each year).
After years of sporadic efforts, the Greater
New York Councils created a full-fledged
NESA committee last year. The impetus
came from newly appointed Scout Executive Ethan Draddy, who had just arrived
Of course, Draddy isn’t the Big Apple’s
only recent arrival. The city draws people
from all over the world, including every
corner of America. That means many adult
Eagle Scouts, especially in Manhattan, have
no local Scouting roots.
The council’s NESA chairman Ricky
Mason, for example, grew up in Virginia. “I
didn’t even know Scouting existed in New
York City,” he says. He reconnected only because a colleague at his law firm who knew
someone in Scouting heard that he was an
Eagle Scout. After attending a few Eagle
Scout Hall of Fame dinners, he was hooked.
EAGLE SCOUT HALL OF FAME
This winter, Mason’s committee restarted
the Hall of Fame dinners, which went on
hiatus during the financial crisis. Some
200 adult Eagle Scouts attended to hear
about Scouting and see Deputy Mayor (and
Distinguished Eagle Scout) Robert K. Steel
enter the council’s Hall of Fame. Other Hall
of Fame recipients include Rex Tillerson,
CEO of ExxonMobile, and J.W. Marriott, executive chairman of Marriott International.
The committee also holds much smaller
events, called Eagle Reserves, across the city.
“The big thing is following up with them
after the fact,” says Director of Field Service
Chris Coscia. “The next step is engaging
them.” To that end, council staff members
follow up with every attendee.
COURTESY OF HARRISON & BODELL, LLP
Harry W. Harrison and Daniel D. Bodell
Now, a San Diego law firm is getting
in on the action. Harrison & Bodell has
announced a $1,000 scholarship that will
go to one deserving Scout each year. (Both
Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts are eligible.) To
enter, the Scout must submit an original
400- to 600-word essay on how Scouting
prepared him or her for the future. For
details, visit harrisonbodell.com/scholarship.
The scholarship is the brainchild of
founding partner Harry Harrison, an Eagle
Scout. “We are always looking to contribute to the community, especially when
it involves the advancement of young
people,” Harrison says. “As an Eagle Scout,
and given my great experience with Scouting, a Scouting scholarship simply made
Eagles of 2013
Total Eagle Scouts: 56,841 (second-highest
Total number of service hours: 9,347,047
Average age: 17.24 years
Region with the most Eagles: Western (19,314
A key role for NESA at the national
level is to support local council NESA
committees. To amplify this support,
NESA has awarded eight $1,000 grants to
the councils below. Stay tuned this fall for
more information on how these councils
put their committee grants to use.
Chicago Area Council
Daniel Boone Council
Lewis & Clark Council
Mount Baker Council
Muskingum Valley Council
San Gabriel Valley Council
Would you like to apply for a grant to
help support Eagle Scouts in your council?
Your council’s NESA committee must
complete the form at nesa.org/committee
grants starting in December 2014. The
deadline is Feb. 28, 2015.
Robby D. Cohen Baltimore Area Council
George A. Fosselius Mount Diablo Silverado Council
Larry Kubiak Suwannee River Area Council
Major Matthew Morrow Golden Empire Council
Richard Pfaltzgraff Central New Jersey Council
Philip M. Pfeffer Middle Tennessee Council
Todd R. Plotner Northeast Illinois Council
Don Sidlowski Samoset Council
Benjamin Clifford Smith W. D. Boyce Council
JOIN THE NESA LEGACY SOCIETY
By making a contribution to the
national NESA endowment, you will
help fund Eagle Scout scholarships,
NESA committee service grants, career
networking opportunities and more.
(Note: You must first become a James E.
West Fellow in your local council.)
Visit nesa.org/PDF/542-121.pdf to make
a contribution. All NESA LEGACY SOCIETY
FELLOWS will be recognized with a unique
certificate, a pin to wear on the James E.
West knot and name recognition in the
pages of Eagles’ Call magazine.
Members_ES_14SU .indd 5
5/21/14 9:55 AM
COMMUNITY // Eagle Scout Projects
More Than Child’s Play
The 2013 Northeast Region Adams Award Winner
ike a lot of kids, Conor Butler
of Hudson, Mass., struggled
with his weight growing up.
One reason, perhaps, was the
obsolete equipment at the
Hubert Kindergarten playground. That
playground, which dates to 1924, was
in bad shape when Conor attended the
school in 1999 — and in even worse shape
when he began searching for an Eagle
Scout service project a decade later.
Today, the playground looks nothing
like it did in 1999. For his Eagle project,
Conor raised nearly $10,000, designed a
modern kids’ fitness course for the playground and supervised the course’s installation. His project earned him the 2013
Glenn A. and Melinda W. Adams National
Eagle Scout Service Project of the Year
Award for the Northeast Region.
The fitness course
COURTESY OF THE BUTLER FAMILY (4)
WHY A FITNESS COURSE: Childhood obesity rates continue to be high in the U.S.
Conor discovered that obesity rates for
kids ages 6 to 11 rose from 6.5 percent in
1980 to 19.8 percent in 2008. The fitness
course he designed, which was built by
GameTime, incorporates balance, upperbody development
stations in one
This Massachusetts playground for kindergartners is actually a fitness course in
disguise, designed by health-conscious Eagle Scout Conor Butler.
climbers, a balance beam, toadstool steps
and a “swivel meister” (a rocking platform
with stationary handholds).
IN MEMORIAM: When he was in kindergarten,
Conor often played on the playground
with his friend Nick Cremins (the two
joined Cub Scouts together). Nick died
from cancer in 2001, and Conor dedicated
the project to his memory. Nick’s mom,
Heather, helped cut the ribbon at the
Eagle Scout Conor Butler, who struggled with his weight
growing up, hit the refresh button on his former kindergarten
playground to help encourage a new generation of fit kids.
The colorful components of Conor’s playground design target
various body parts, including the upper body (with “Space
Loops” you crawl across like monkey bars), core (with an
“Inchworm” balance beam) and more. A thick padding of
mulch keeps kids safe from dangerous falls.
BY THE NUMBERS: Conor and his 58 volunteers excavated 15 tons of dirt, poured 3.5
tons of concrete and spread 60 cubic yards
of dirt. Conor spent 165 hours on the project, while his volunteers spent 312 hours.
ALL HANDS ON DECK: Conor’s volunteers included members of two Boy Scout troops,
a Girl Scout troop, a Venturing crew and a
Cub Scout pack. The younger boys helped
with hauling, the girls provided lunch and
the older Scouts did work that involved
4/25/14 8:48 AM
other Notable Eagle projects
COURTESY OF THE HARWOOD FAMILY
OBSTACLE COURSE: That’s not to say the
whole project went off without a hitch.
When Conor discovered that the city’s
parks department, not the school, was re-
sponsible for the playground, he had to get
a new set of permissions. When the school
district changed the age assignments at
the kindergarten, he had to switch out a
couple of elements to be age-appropriate.
STAYING FIT: Today, Conor is an airman
first class in the U.S. Air Force. Stationed
at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base in
Tucson, Ariz., Conor works as an A-10
Thunderbolt crew chief. “I am much more
interested in fitness today,” he says. “It’s a
big part of my daily life.”
Samuel John Harwood
For victims of domestic violence in the Phoenix
area, MOMA’s House offers an oasis of shelter,
support and healing. Until Sam Harwood came
along, however, the building’s backyard looked
more like a desert than an oasis.
Sam’s Eagle project transformed the
backyard into a serenity garden. He and his
volunteers planted drought-resistant shrubs
and trees, installed an irrigation system, laid a
path of pavers and built a large shade structure. Now, shelter residents can relax there as
they prepare to re-enter the larger community.
Because residents were understandably
skittish around an all-male workforce, Sam
wasn’t sure how his project was being
received. He eventually found out. “The
women themselves have kept the garden in
absolutely pristine condition, attesting to its
benefit and their appreciation,” he says.
To Save a Life
COURTESY OF THE BENSON FAMILY
A decade ago, Jacob Martin of Ocean View,
Del., accompanied his dad, Brian, on a rescue call with the Bethany Beach Volunteer
Fire Company. A fisherman had been lost in
the Indian River Inlet, one of the most dangerous waterways on the Eastern Seaboard.
Other fishermen had tried unsuccessfully to
reach the victim with their fishing rods.
“He grabbed them, but the tide was
too strong, and he was pulled under,” Jacob
recalls. “Later, his body was recovered.”
That death was tragic, but not unusual.
“At least once a year, we lose someone there,”
says Jacob’s mom, Jesika, a volunteer EMT
with the fire company (Jacob’s dad, Brian, is
the fire chief). “The current’s just so strong.
They’re gone before we can get there.”
Jacob was about 8 years old when that
fisherman died. And he had just found his
Eagle Scout service project.
Fast forward to November 2012. After a
year and a half of planning and fundraising,
Jacob gathered a group of volunteers at the
Indian River Inlet Bridge. There, in freezing
weather, they installed six bright yellow
boxes along the bridge, three on either side
of the inlet. Each $600 box contained a life
ring — and the potential for a happier ending than what Jacob had once witnessed.
Jacob’s project ended that month, but his
story didn’t. Last July 24, he got a call from
his mom at Grotto Pizza, where he worked
after school. “She said, ‘You saved someone’s
life today.’ I thought she was joking, but she
was serious; the project had actually saved
someone,” Jacob recalls.
That someone was 25-year-old Rashid
Gafurov, a Russian immigrant who lives in
nearby Rehoboth Beach. He had been out
COURTESY OF JESIKA MARTIN
LAND SPEED RECORD: Although planning and
raising money took a year, the actual construction went quickly. “We installed $9,000
worth of playground equipment in five
hours, a feat that even surprised the onsite
consultant from Marturano Recreation,”
Conor says. “And we did it without needing
a single Band-Aid.”
COURTESY OF THE BUTLER FAMILY (4)
Eagle Scout Projects // COMMUNITY
Jacob Martin stands with Rashid Gafurov, a beach visitor
who was swept into dangerous waters and rescued with a
life ring installed by Jacob as his Eagle Scout project.
on his boogie board and was caught in the
inlet’s whirlpool. A stranger had rescued
him with one of Jacob’s life rings.
“It was amazing,” Jacob says. “I just
couldn’t believe it when I got the news.”
Ironically, Jacob’s parents had responded to the initial distress call from the inlet.
“We heard it come across the radio that
the subject was lost, that they’d lost sight
of him,” Jesika recalls. “Then they said, ‘The
subject has been pulled to shore.’ ”
A few days later, Jacob had the chance
to meet the man his project had helped
save. “It was amazing to know that I made
a difference,” he says.
Today, Jacob is a freshman at the University of Delaware, where he is studying
mechanical engineering. He is thinking
about joining the fire service as a volunteer
after he graduates. Until then, his life rings
stand guard at the Indian River Inlet, waiting to save another life on his behalf.
Garth William Benson
Like many Native American reservations, the
Spirit Lake Tribe’s 500-square-mile home in
North Dakota struggles with poverty. Only
one-fifth of tribe members are employed, and
most of them live below the poverty level.
Garth Benson’s Eagle project didn’t end
poverty, but it did offer something that’s out
of reach for many Spirit Lake kids: bicycles.
Garth and his team of volunteers combed
through 103 bikes that had been donated to
St. Stephen Lutheran Church in Bloomington,
Minn., and successfully repaired 89 of them
to send to the reservation. (They cannibalized
the others for parts.)
Garth has been helping his dad fix up
bikes for charity since he was in middle
school, but his volunteers weren’t quite so
adept. “The fix-up days were extremely hectic,” he says. “My volunteers had questions
and needed help almost constantly.”
4/23/14 2:02 PM
LIFESTYLE // Tripp Gulledge / Sports Scene / Defiant
Eagle Scout Tripp Gulledge
Boston Red Sox baseball player
The 2014 pro baseball season’s in full swing,
but we’re still buzzing about Eagle Scout
Shane Victorino’s second World Series ring
earned last year. His three-run double in
Game 6 helped the Boston Red Sox capture
the championship. Even
if the Red Sox aren’t
your team, it’s tough not
to root for Victorino,
who told Boys’ Life in
2010 that Scouting
taught him “not only
leadership skills but …
structure. And, honestly, the motto: Be
As for 2014, Victorino began the season
on the disabled list with a hamstring injury
but came back swinging in late April. We’ll be
watching how he contributes this season.
– Bryan Wendell
FROM TOP: COURTESY OF KEITH COLLARD; COURTESY OF THE GULLEDGE FAMILY
id you hear the one about
the blind drum major?
At first blush, Tripp
Gulledge’s story sounds like
the setup for an insensitive
joke. Instead, it’s a good example of how attitude determines altitude (to paraphrase Zig
Ziglar). A junior at Murphy High School in
Mobile, Ala., Tripp was named drum major
a year ago. Last fall and winter, he led the
school’s 160-member band on the football
field and in events like the Mardi Gras parade.
His biggest challenge? Meting out dis-
Tripp Gulledge, a junior, keeps the Murphy High School
marching band in sync as drum major. The Eagle Scout,
who is legally blind in his right eye with limited vision in
his left, continues to lead by example.
cipline. “It’s difficult sometimes for me to
figure out who’s doing the really dumb thing
at the back of the field that’s causing us to
have to run a rep five times,” he says.
Still, he finds standing on a podium is
easier than marching, which he did his sophomore year. Even though band director Stan
Chapman gave him simple moves that year,
“I had to worry about being oriented to the
field,” he says. “That was tough.”
Tripp has been legally blind in his right
eye since infancy and has never had more
than poor vision in his left. In 2011, his right
lens was removed for retina surgery, leaving
him blind. Now, his doctor is waiting for
artificial-retina technology to improve before
doing more surgery. “Every time you go
in and out with a lens, there’s trauma, risk
of infection and a lot of other things,” says
Tripp’s dad, Rob, himself an Eagle Scout.
“We’re just going to let it be for right now.”
When Tripp had his last surgery, he was
working on his Life Scout requirements, so
wrapping up his remaining merit badges
was no big deal. He earned the Disabilities
Awareness merit badge during his recovery
and did other badge paperwork on the drive
back from Miami to Mobile.
A bigger challenge was his Eagle project,
which involved re-decking a 110-foot pier for
the Mobile Sail and Power Squadron. “I had
my cane on me at all times because I never
knew when there would be a crack or something,” he says. “I spent a lot of time on my
hands and knees inspecting things.”
Although Tripp has never had good
vision, his dad calls him a visual learner.
“When you’re discussing things like music
theory with him, he’s envisioning a piano keyboard and the notes on the staff and all these
things that he can’t see,” Rob says.
Tripp can envision the future as well.
Inspired by Pat Conroy’s memoir The Water
Is Wide, he wants to be a teacher. In fact, he
plans to study music education in college and
someday return to Murphy High School as
If that happens, he’ll certainly know what
to look for in a drum major — whether he
can see the candidates or not.
GREG M. COOPER-USA TODAY SPORTS
A Scout Is Brave
Alvin Townley’s Latest Book
In October 1967, 11 American
prisoners were moved from
the dreaded Hanoi Hilton
to an even bleaker facility,
dubbed Alcatraz by future
Medal of Honor recipient
James Stockdale and his 10
fellow prisoners. For the
next two years, the Alcatraz
Eleven, who led the prisoner resistance, endured
brutal conditions and horrific torture at the
hands of the North Vietnamese.
Their leadership, resilience and defiance
inspired Eagle Scout Alvin Townley’s latest
book. In Defiant (St. Martin’s Press, $25.99),
Townley tells the story of the Alcatraz Eleven
and the wives who fought for their return.
The New York Times called the book “gripping.”
Two heroes of Defiant, George Coker
and James Mulligan, were Eagle Scouts, and
several others had Scouting backgrounds.
Get your own copy at alvintownley.com.
5/7/14 7:19 AM
Eagles in Afghanistan / Cycling Scouts / A Khaki Wedding // LIFESTYLE
In the Wild
Eagles in Afghanistan
JESSICA AND JENNIFER SCHAAP
Editor’s Note: Eagle Scout badges show up in the
most surprising places, from ships to statues to
stained-glass windows. If you find an Eagle badge
or other Eagle Scout symbol “in the wild,” send us
a picture and tell us its story. We might publish it
in a future issue of Eagles’ Call. Send submissions
to [email protected]
“That particular day we ran several stations: first aid, bridge building, photography,
etc.,” says Ertl, who ran the first-aid station.
“Each station had a discussion, then a demonstration and a hands-on component.”
In 2009, a small, nongovernmental agency,
PARSA, helped rebuild Scouting, which had
been a part of Afghan culture since the 1930s.
Ertl and his fellow Eagle Scouts volunteered
to help out for a day.
Ertl, a physician mentor adviser in
Look closely at this picture of Afghan Scouts,
and you’ll spot Eagle Scout badges on four
hats. (Hint: They’re in the back row.) Those
hats belong to Lt. Col. Matt Ruzicka (U.S.
Army), Lt. Cmdr. Christian Ertl (U.S. Navy),
Cmdr. James Vandenburg (U.S. Navy) and
Col. Richard Roessler (U.S. Air Force). The
four U.S. officers — all active Scouters back
home — spent a day last December working
with a group of Scouts in Kabul.
Aug. 15. Their mission (aside from cycling
3,770 miles) is “to demonstrate how motivated young men, committed to the values
of exercise and healthy living, practice the 12
points of the Boy Scout Law while challenging themselves to reach new heights.”
Not surprisingly in this digital age,
the group is blogging its trip; check out
escaa2014.org. The troop invites other Eagle
Scouts to follow their progress online or,
better yet, join in for a day or two of riding
along the way.
Eagle Scouts Ride Across America
hese days, you can fly across the
country in six or seven hours.
Even taking into account delays at
security, you can easily eat breakfast in San
Francisco and dinner in New York.
This summer, some members of Troop
165 from Fredericksburg, Va., are taking a
little longer to cross the continent. OK, a lot
longer. They’re going by bicycle. Fourteen
Eagle Scouts from the troop, along with two
of their parents, plan to leave San Francisco
on June 14 and roll into Virginia Beach on
COURTESY OF THOMAS MON
Afghanistan, spends much of his time collecting body parts, so he was happy to be part
of something positive. “To see that the hope
for Afghanistan is their children — and that
someone is actually caring for them — was a
relief,” he says. “While most of us do not crave
attention, there remains a need to expound
on the good things that are happening here.”
To learn more about Afghan Scouting,
COURTESY OF CHRISTIAN ERTL
GREG M. COOPER-USA TODAY SPORTS
When Jeff Beach of Lowell, Mich.,
got married in October, five of his six
groomsmen were former Scouts (four of
them Eagle Scouts like him). His best man,
Ryan Rogers, served as assistant senior
patrol leader during Beach’s term as senior
patrol leader, and several of the men had
worked together on camp staff. It seemed
only natural, then, to wear Scout uniforms
for the ceremony.
The only problem was selling his fiancée,
Sara, on the idea. Before he could broach the
subject, however, she came up with it herself.
(How’s that for a soul mate?)
Once guests got over their surprise, they
loved the idea. “Nobody had actually seen
anything like it,” Beach says.
5/21/14 8:18 AM
We get the scoop from an Eagle Scout
working at the CBS Evening News.
By Bryan Wendell / Photographs by W. Garth Dowling
4/10/14 9:05 AM
come in,” the voice on the phone says.
Scott Berger stands in the kitchen. He
just got home from an Eagle Scout board
of review, still buzzing with the excitement
of seeing a young man take that final step
toward Eagle, when one of his CBS Evening
News colleagues calls with a story that’ll
change the world.
“What’s going on?” Berger asks. He’s still
wearing his Scout uniform.
“Just come in.” And the phone goes
Berger looks at his wife and says,
“My goodness, something big must be
He changes out of his uniform, rushes
to the newsroom and, as he recounts later,
“got here in time to go on the air to say
that Osama bin Laden had been found
Berger, associate director of the CBS
Evening News with Scott Pelley, has been
preparing his whole life for nights like
May 1, 2011.
“It was probably the biggest story in the
last few years that we were involved in. But
that’s what you get into when you decide
to come into this profession,” he says. “You
never know when the big story’s going to
Berger’s big story — “Eagle Scout
becomes network newsman” — begins
long before he got the call that the world’s
most notorious terrorist had been killed.
It starts, as so many of these stories
do, in Scouting. Berger says the program
prepared him to walk in hallways once
traversed by one-name news icons like
Murrow, Cronkite and Rather.
YOU’LL FIND THOSE HALLWAYS at the CBS
Broadcast Center on West 57th Street in
New York. 60 Minutes, Inside Edition, CBS
Sunday Morning and dozens of others broadcast from this slender eight-story building.
Down a long hallway and past a heavy,
soundproof door, Berger settles into his
chair in the front row of the CBS Evening
News control room. Unlike, say, a music
recording studio, there’s no window that
lets Berger see Pelley swivel in his chair
behind a semicircle desk. The only way
Berger can see what’s happening in the
studio is through the 100-plus monitors
blanketing his field of view. No remote
control is needed here; Berger just turns his
head to see the feed he needs.
If he looks down and to the right, he’ll
find views from 10 different cameras, all
trained on Pelley. There are straight-on
shots, side angles and cameras capable of
the swooping moves often seen before
Eagle Scout Scott Berger (opposite page) stands proudly
in the CBS Evening News studio. That pride comes from
the show’s history: Walter Cronkite, Dan Rather and now
Scott Pelley. “Probably more than at any other network,
CBS carries a great sense of tradition and responsibility
in bringing the news to the American people,” Berger
says. But there’s little time for standing around the
studio. Berger’s most at home in the control room (above).
or after a commercial break. One camera
peeks over Pelley’s shoulder as he conducts
For instance, if Berger looks up and to
the left he’ll see a live shot of journalist Seth
Doane checking his microphone levels in
typhoon-ravaged Tacloban, Philippines.
Pelley will pretape his interview with
Doane because the four-second satellite
delay would cripple a live broadcast. While
Pelley talks with Doane about how he’s
been holding up (“Last night was my first
5/21/14 8:25 AM
“Becoming an Eagle Scout
for me has been, without any
doubt, the most important
thing in my life.”
All that doom and gloom about the future of
journalism? Scott Berger doesn’t buy it.
But if you or a young person you know
hopes for a future in the news business,
Berger has some advice: Write. A lot.
“Regardless of whether you’re going
to be in front of the camera or behind
— cameraman, sound man — the best
thing that you can do is write. If you
become a good writer and are able to communicate, that is the ultimate thing that you
can do for yourself,” he says.
ON THE WEB
SCOTT BERGER TAKES YOU ON AN
EXCLUSIVE LOOK BEHIND THE SCENES
OF THE CBS EVENING NEWS. WATCH
THE VIDEO NOW AT NESA.ORG.
night sleeping indoors,” Doane says), Berger
prepares his stopwatch to record exactly
how long the segment lasts.
Next to the image of Doane, Berger can
see pretaped video packages queued up
for air, a variety of CBS graphics and logos,
and an atomic-clock-synchronized display
showing it’s 5:33:14 p.m.
At the top right of Berger’s field of
view are live feeds from competitors Fox,
ABC, NBC, MSNBC and CNN. Berger
says the executive staff keeps an eye on
other evening newscasts to see how they’re
playing a story. Occasionally they’ll change
the show accordingly. “Most times, though,
we want to make sure the show we put
on the air is our show and not dictated by
anybody else,” he says.
Even with dozens of video monitors
glowing in his face, colleagues talking into
the headset affixed to his ear and a computer screen embedded into the desk in
front of him, Berger’s still sane. Calm even.
At 5:49, Berger notices a clip of
President Obama’s news conference cuts
off too early. Instead of shouting across the
control room or sprinting down the hall to
ask editors to recut it, Berger leans forward,
holds down a button on the communications console and delivers the request.
“Real-life news is not really like you
might see on television or in the movies,”
Berger says. “Although there are chaotic
moments, especially when news is breaking, most of us have been doing this a long
time. So you sort of get used to the craziness, and so you don’t act so crazy.”
As associate director, Berger is the director’s literal right-hand man. He is essentially
the broadcast’s air traffic controller. “There
are so many sources for video and graphics, and it’s my job to keep track of all of
that,” Berger says. He must “get on the air at
exactly the right time and get off the air at
4/11/14 10:22 AM
serves as assistant secretary-treasurer on
DGA’s national board of directors. Other
board members include directors Jon
Favreau (Iron Man), Michael Mann (Ali)
and fellow Eagle Scout Steven Spielberg
(Saving Private Ryan).
But even with all his success, Berger still
ranks an award he earned at age 15 at the
top of his list.
“Becoming an Eagle Scout for me
has been, without any doubt, the most
important thing in my life,” he says. “And
considering that it happened when I was
15 years old, I think that says a lot.
“It has helped guide me through fun
times and really difficult times. Because
somewhere in my mind, I would always
think: What would an Eagle Scout do in this
situation? And it’s never led me wrong.”
During the CBS Evening News with Scott Pelley, Scott
Berger is the air traffic controller, scanning a hundred
small screens to make sure videos and graphics end up
in the right place (opposite page). But even with all the
technology surrounding him, Berger still monitors the
show’s length using an old-fashioned analog stopwatch.
Right: Berger, who’s usually on the other side of the
camera, gets a little touch-up from a CBS makeup artist
before filming an exclusive Eagles’ Call video you can
watch at nesa.org.
that time. We can’t say, because we have a
lot of news that day, we’re going five or 10
minutes long. It doesn’t work that way.”
That need for precise timing explains the
ticking stopwatch on Berger’s desk. In an
all-digital control room, it’s the only analog
thing around. Yes, Berger uses a digital
timer, too, but he likes to be prepared for
when the technology doesn’t work. Just like
how in this age of GPS-guided hiking, he
still packs a map and compass.
The moment before each live broadcast
begins is even less reliant on technology,
and it’s one of the coolest parts of Berger’s
job: the countdown. Yes, there’s actually
someone who says “5 … 4 … 3 … 2 … 1,”
and it’s this Eagle Scout.
at the CBS Evening
News seriously, and the same goes for his
job in Scouting. The Distinguished Eagle
Scout sits on several national committees
and helps review new merit badges. He’s
a Vigil Honor member of the Order of
the Arrow, a Silver Beaver Award recipient
and chairman of the national Merit Badge
Maintenance Task Force. (His complete
Scouting résumé would fill the entire space
allotted for this story.)
Like anyone who’s so involved with
Scouting, Berger has a Scouting life that
creeps into his professional one. During
a break before the broadcast begins one
Friday, Berger sees he has a new email
“This is usually the time I get a message
that a merit badge pamphlet has been
finished and is ready for me to review,” he
says. Sure enough, he sees one from Janice
Downey of the BSA’s design and develop-
BERGER TAKES HIS JOB
ment team. He files the message for later
— but not because he’s trying to hide his
Scouting affiliation from coworkers. In fact,
the opposite is true.
“Everyone here at CBS thinks of me
as the Boy Scout, and I’m proud of that,”
He works long hours and could be
called into the newsroom anytime day or
night, but Berger’s dedication to the BSA
“Scouting is something that you can
always fit in,” he says. “You find the time,
and you kind of get to know your limit.
… My hope is that I’ll never take on more
than I can handle, and I hope I’ll know the
difference. So far I’m doing all right.”
He’s doing more than all right, and
it’s not just his Scouting colleagues who
have noticed. When Berger received the
Silver Beaver Award from the Patriots’ Path
Council, Scott Pelley himself recorded
a congratulatory message to play at the
His professional life has been equally
successful. In 2009, Berger received the
Directors Guild of America’s Franklin J.
Schaffner Achievement Award, and he
Scott Berger credits Scouting with giving
him the skills necessary to work at CBS
News — and with getting him in CBS’ door
in the first place.
He started as a CBS page. A Scouting
friend’s girlfriend was working there and
introduced Berger to the right people.
He worked on Kate & Allie and the
$20,000 Pyramid while he was a student
at New York University. Working on those
shows helped him chart his next steps.
“As I got older and graduated college, I
realized I wanted something permanent and
something meaningful,” Berger says. “And I
really think I got a lot of that from Scouting.
My feeling was always to give back. That’s
how I was trained. I thought by helping to
inform our country I was able to contribute
to that effort.”
His next stop was a news desk assistant
job at the local CBS affiliate in New York
City. Then he got a stage manager position
at the CBS Evening News before moving up
to the associate director role he has held
5/21/14 9:59 AM
5/1/14 8:44 AM
From Ghost Wings to Valor
COURTESY OF VALOR STUDIOS
onor and courage. Loyalty and
patriotism. Such values are easy
to espouse (who could oppose
honor?), but they can be hard to
master, especially when tested in
the crucible of war. For more than a decade,
Eagle Scout Adam Makos has been exploring those values by telling the stories of
warriors, most notably in his best-selling
book A Higher Call (Berkley
That’s not what he
set out to do, however.
In middle school, he was
simply looking for a way
to pass the time with his
brother, Bryan (also an Eagle
Scout), and their friend Joe
Gohrs. “It was a rainy day,
and we’d just received our
first computer,” Adam recalls.
“We decided we were going
to make a newsletter.”
How did a few kids
in the small town of
Montoursville, Pa., fill their newsletter?
They quickly settled on World War II
aviation, a common interest. Both of the
Makos’ grandfathers had served in the
war (one in the Pacific and one stateside),
and they were full of stories. “Growing up
around those two men, I was very lucky,”
Adam says. “They would take Bryan and
me to air shows and to air museums. They
would build us little plastic models that
we would quickly destroy. Thanks to their
influence, we became very interested in
that black-and-white era that they came
After school and on weekends, the young
journalists started interviewing local
veterans and publishing a homegrown, photocopied newsletter called Ghost Wings. They
missed football games and parties to do
interviews and gradually ventured farther
afield to attend veterans’ reunions and other
events, where they often would be the only
teenagers among scores of
In a 2008 Forbes column,
Korean War veteran and
journalist James Brady
recalled how the brothers
enlisted their father to take
them to an interview with
him because they were too
young to drive. “As I recall,
I served them doughnuts
and milk,” Brady wrote.
“And you thought Henry
Luce and Brit Hadden were
young when they launched
By the end of high school, the teens
were sending a professionally printed magazine to 7,000 subscribers. After college, the
magazine — now called Valor — became
a full-time pursuit for the Makos brothers
(and eventually other family members).
The new name reflects a change in
focus from World War II to all of America’s
recent wars. One thing didn’t change,
however: the magazine’s mission of “preserving the sacrifices of America’s veterans.”
There was no room in Valor for stories of
the enemy, even the German veterans who
occasionally showed up at reunions of
By Mark Ray
5/1/14 8:44 AM
John D. Shaw’s painting “A Higher Call,”
featured on the cover of Makos’ book,
depicts the December 1943 day that German
pilot Franz Stigler chose to spare American
pilot Charlie Brown and his crew in the skies
CHARLIE AND FRANZ
Many of the veterans Adam and Bryan met
recommended other people they should
talk with and other stories they should tell.
Time and again, a vet would ask them if
they had heard the story of the German
pilot who had let an American bomber go
during World War II. Adam hadn’t, and he
secretly wondered if the story might be an
urban legend or a tall tale from the Internet.
When he learned that the American pilot’s
name was supposedly Charlie Brown, he
imagined a twist on the story of Snoopy
and the Red Baron with the hapless, baldheaded kid somehow at the center of it.
Despite his misgivings, Adam pursued
the story, eventually tracking down the
retired pilot, whose name really was Charlie
Brown, in Miami. Brown agreed to an interview — but only if Adam first interviewed
the German pilot, Franz Stigler. “When you
have his story, come visit me and I’ll tell you
mine,” Brown said. “In this story, I’m just a
character. Franz Stigler is the real hero.”
ANOTHER UNLIKELY FRIENDSHIP
Adam Makos’ next book, Devotion, due out in October, explores another unlikely friendship. It
tells the story of two Korean War pilots: Tom Hudner, a white
son of privilege, and Jesse Brown, a black son of Mississippi
sharecroppers. When Brown’s Corsair fighter was shot down
behind enemy lines during the Chosin Reservoir Campaign,
Hudner crash-landed his own plane in a failed attempt to
save his friend’s life. “It’s incredible when you think about it:
a man purposefully crash-landing on a mountainside in the
snow behind enemy lines just to try to buy his friend another
chance at life,” Adam says. (Given America’s racial landscape at the time, Hudner’s action is even more amazing.)
Last year, Adam accompanied Hudner to North Korea
in an attempt to recover Brown’s remains. A monsoon
prevented them from reaching the crash site, but they plan
to make another attempt this fall.
In February 2004, Adam used $600 of the
magazine’s limited funds to fly to Vancouver,
British Columbia, and meet Franz Stigler.
The 23-year-old Makos had just graduated
from college, but his education was only
beginning. “I went to Vancouver one person,
and I walked away totally different,” he says.
Adam quickly learned that Stigler had
indeed spared Brown and his crew over
Bremen, Germany, on Dec. 20, 1943. In fact,
rather than down the crippled B-17 — the
last victory he needed to earn the coveted
Knight’s Cross — he had escorted the
Americans out over the North Sea, beyond
the reach of anti-aircraft guns. It was an act
that would surely have put him in front of
a firing squad had his superiors found out.
No one discovered what he had done,
however. Both Brown and Stigler survived the war. They talked little of their
chance meeting in the skies over Germany,
although they must have thought about
it often. Brown eventually tracked Stigler
down in 1990, and the two men remained
close friends until their deaths a few
months apart in 2008.
A HIGHER CALL
Adam’s visit with Stigler, which lasted a
week, became the basis for two articles
in Valor. But he quickly realized the story
was bigger and more important. Over the
next eight years, he interviewed Brown
and Stigler multiple times and conducted
extensive research that included trips to
CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT: © JOHN D. SHAW AND VALOR STUDIOS; COURTESY OF VALOR STUDIOS (7); COURTESY OF THE WHITE HOUSE
American veterans. “We were young and
patriotic,” Adam says. “Our attitude was that
these men had killed young American men
60-odd years earlier, so why should we recognize them? Why should we honor them
by telling their stories?”
And then he talked with Charlie Brown.
Eagle Scout Adam Makos, a member of Troop
172 in Farragut, Pa., credits much of his
success to Scoutmaster Chuck Mertes who,
he says, “devoted every ounce of his being to
seeing that we learned and really embodied
the Scout Law.”
But the program taught him more than just
the Scout Law. “If you’re prepared, if your
intentions are just and true, there’s nothing
a Scout cannot achieve,” he says. “Scouting
does not teach failure. I like to think that
lesson molded me as a young man and will
benefit me for years and years to come.”
5/9/14 9:07 AM
CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT: © JOHN D. SHAW AND VALOR STUDIOS; COURTESY OF VALOR STUDIOS (7); COURTESY OF THE WHITE HOUSE
The Makos brothers followed their passion for telling
veterans’ stories, starting with their magazine Ghost Wings
(promoted at an air show, above). The pair has met with
dignitaries and celebrities, including President George W.
Bush (right column, top), the Prince of Wales and journalist
Katie Couric. This passion for storytelling also led Adam to
interview Franz Stigler and Charlie Brown, resulting in his
first book, A Higher Call. Brown and Stigler are seen in their
wartime portraits and when they reconnected after the war.
archives, tours of bomber bases in England
and fighter airfields in Germany, and even
a flight in a restored B-17. The result was
A Higher Call, which tells the pilots’ stories
but also explores a compelling question:
Can good men be found on both sides of
a bad war?
Throughout the book — especially as
he tells Stigler’s story — Adam reflects on
honor and loyalty. “That’s what drew me to
the story,” he says. “When I came to know
Franz, I came to know a man who was
very complex and deep and who appreciated honor and loyalty. This wasn’t about
a man who took his finger off the trigger
at a whim. This was about a man who had
a deep sense of loyalty to God and to his
After spending time on The New York
Times and Sunday Times best-seller lists,
A Higher Call has been published in
Germany, France, Poland and Hungary.
Now people who were on all sides of
World War II can read the book and reflect
on what it means to live with honor in dishonorable circumstances.
Since its founding in 1999, Valor Studios
has grown into a one-stop shop for militaryhistory products. In addition to Valor
magazine, the company sells art prints and
collectibles, many of them autographed by
the heroes they honor. The company has also
taken veterans, such as the Band of Brothers
from Easy Company, to bases stateside and
across the globe on morale-boosting visits
for active-duty military personnel.
Visit valorstudios.com for more information.
5/7/14 1:21 PM
Remembering Two Special Eagle Scouts
Activist Sam Berns and artist George Rodrigue each shared a passion for helping others.
ast winter, America lost two Eagle
Scouts who, in very different ways,
demonstrated what it means to live
as Eagle Scouts. Their lives are emblematic
of how Eagle Scouts lead lives of service —
however short or long those lives may be.
Sam Berns was just 17 when he died on
Jan. 10, 2014, but he was already a celebrity.
He had been the subject of an HBO documentary, he had given a TEDx talk, and he
counted among his friends U.S. Sen. Jack
Reed, New England Patriots owner Robert
Kraft and Dr. Francis Collins, director of
the National Institutes of Health.
Sam rose to prominence because of his
activism for progeria — also known as premature aging — the disease that eventually
took his life. But he never let the disease
define or confine him. In fact, his October
2013 TEDx talk, titled “My Philosophy
for a Happy Life,” focused less on his
disease than on his accomplishments, like
performing with the Foxborough High
School marching band using a special
lightweight snare-drum harness his family
When he did focus on the disease, it
was to promote the search for a cure. His
Eagle project, for example, involved designing and posting a message on a digital
billboard to raise awareness of the Progeria
Eagle Scout Sam Berns’ work to raise awareness for
progeria touched many despite his short life.
Research Foundation (progeriaresearch.org).
That foundation, which his physician
parents and his aunt founded in 1999, has
already funded the first successful clinical
trial of a progeria treatment.
To art lovers, Distinguished Eagle Scout
George Rodrigue, who died on Dec. 14,
2013, at the age of 69, was best known
as the Blue Dog Man. Beginning in the
1990s, the New Orleans artist created
COU RTESY OF WENDY
W. Garth Dowling
Known for his colorful Blue Dog paintings, the
Distinguished Eagle Scout’s youth foundation continues
to support art education in New Orleans schools.
COUrtesy of HBO and The Progeria Research Foundation
ACHIEVEMENTS // Two Special Eagles
dozens of paintings featuring an iconic
blue dog. (It was inspired by the Cajun
legend of the loup-garou, a werewolf-like
creature said to prowl Louisiana swamps.)
Rodrigue’s blue dog eventually appeared at
art museums, on festival posters and even
in vodka advertisements.
It also became a way to give back to
his community. After Hurricane Katrina,
Rodrigue founded Blue Dog Relief, which
raised $2.5 million through the sale of
Blue Dog prints to help New Orleans
rebuild. In 2009, he created the George
Rodrigue Foundation for the Arts to
improve arts education. By the end of last
year, the foundation had donated more
than $300,000 and introduced a new artsintegration model in seven schools serving
nearly 3,000 students.
Rodrigue also gave back to Scouting.
Signed and numbered prints of his 2004
painting “Eagle Scout” (left) benefited his
foundation and the Southeast Louisiana
Council. The painting, which is owned by
the National Scouting Museum, shows a
bald eagle wearing a Scout neckerchief. The
neckerchief slide? A blue dog, of course.
For more information on Rodrigue’s
art, visit georgerodrigue.com. His foundation’s
website is georgerodriguefoundation.org.
4/23/14 1:21 PM
Once an Eagle ...
... Always an Eagle. NESA remembers Eagle Scouts
who have passed. Recognize the life of another
Eagle by completing the form found at nesa.org/
eaglegonehome. This link also provides more
information on how to make a Living Memorial
donation in the name of a deceased Eagle.
John Blake Crosby Jr., 74
La Marque, Texas
Passed: Sept. 27, 2013
COUrtesy of HBO and The Progeria Research Foundation
Once an Eagle ... / Awards & Recognition // ACHIEVEMENTS
Jim Denny, 63
Passed: May 2013
Greg Hawkins, 42
Boise, Idaho/Richmond, Va.
Passed: June 26, 2013
Roman S. Kogucki, 16
Passed: October 2012
Don Val Langston, 83
Passed: December 2013
John H. McCarty, 88
Saratoga Springs, N.Y.
Passed: September 2013
Dillon Ptaszek, 25
Ann Arbor, Mich.
Passed: September 2013
Eugene Dale von Rosenberg, 57
New Orleans, La.
Passed: Oct. 4, 2013
Christopher William Sims, 14
Passed: Feb. 9, 2014
Allan A. Huertas Jr., 50
Passed: June 30, 2011
From: Veronica and Stephen
Meyers, longtime family friends.
Awards & Recognition
Eagle Scouts shine, even after reaching the top honor in Scouting. NESA celebrates the achievements
of the Eagle Scouts shown below. Recognize the success of an Eagle by completing the form found at
Nicholas M. Brown
Graduated with a Bachelor of Science in
landscape architecture from the University
of Massachusetts in Amherst, Mass.
Graduated with a Master of Business
Administration from Colorado State
University. Coon owns RCC Construction
and is a major in the Colorado Army National Guard.
Graduated summa cum laude with a
master’s in architecture from Florida
A&M University in May 2013. He is
serving as an architect intern with Engineering Ministries
International in Uganda.
Parker James Ellingson
Received his Bachelor of Science in
electrical engineering with a minor in
biomedical engineering from Georgia
Institute of Technology. He’s employed with Georgia Tech
Research Institute and looking ahead to graduate school.
Dr. Devin C. Flaherty
Graduate of Baylor University, Flaherty
attended UNT Health Science Center in
Fort Worth, earning his medical degree
and a doctorate in integrated physiology in 2009. Now
completing a five-year surgical residency at the University
of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, Devin was
awarded a fellowship in surgical oncology at John Wayne
Cancer Institute in Santa Monica, Calif., starting in June.
In 2013, Kinstrey received two prestigious
awards: the Technical Association of the
Pulp and Paper Industry (TAPPI) Herman
L. Joachim Distinguished Service Award (TAPPI’s highest
award for volunteer service) and Distinguished Alumni –
Lifetime Achievement Award recognized by the alumni
association of the State University of New York, College of
Environmental Science and Forestry. Also during 2013, he
assisted TAPPI to revise the BSA’s Pulp and Paper merit
Dr. Jordan Denney Kraft, D.V.M.
Graduated summa cum laude from Texas
A&M University in 2008 with a Bachelor
of Science in biomedical science, and
graduated cum laude in 2012 with his doctorate in
Van Wert, Ohio
Laing is serving as the 47th International
Master Councilor of the Order of DeMolay.
This is the highest position a young man
can hold in the youth fraternity for boys ages 12-21.
During the year, Laing has traveled extensively in the U.S.
and has visited Canada and France on behalf of DeMolay.
He is currently a junior at Miami University of Ohio
Donald A. Planey
Earned a master’s in political and social
sciences from the University of Chicago
Timothy Patrick Regan Jr.
East Northport, N.Y.
Received a Master of Science in
education from Queens College, N.Y.
Graduated from the University of Florida
with a Bachelor of Design in architecture
and is an intern at an architecture firm in
Elected to city council of Morganton.
Graduated summa cum laude from the
University of Memphis with a Bachelor of
Arts in economics with a minor in public
administration. Attained the Dean’s List for all of his
undergraduate semesters. He was also a finalist for Mr.
University of Memphis and is a member of Kappa Alpha Psi.
Adrian E. Young
Honored as one of Central Penn Business
Journal’s 2013 Forty Under 40 award
recipients for his commitment to
business growth, professional excellence and community
service. Young is executive vice president, partner and
chief compliance officer at Ambassador Advisors LLC.
Young is also the founder and president of AE Young and
Associates PLLC, a law firm that specializes in delivering
business, estate and tax planning solutions to clients
throughout the state.
4/23/14 1:22 PM
ACHIEVEMENTS // Family Affair
Eagle Scouting Is a Family Affair
Scouting’s highest honor is best shared with other generations of family members. Join NESA in celebrating the families of Eagle Scouts shown
below. Recognize the Eagles in your own family by completing the form found at nesa.org/eaglefamilyaffair.
Arnold Family Hinesville, Ga.
Dickerson Family Abilene, Texas
Milligan-Reid Family Lincoln, Calif.
James S. “Jimmy” Arnold (2012), James D. “Jim” Arnold
(1978) and Tyler J. Arnold (2013)
Dr. Russell Sturges Dickerson Sr. (1979), Russell
Sturges Dickerson Jr. (2012) and Dr. Jaime Eldred
Dickerson Jr. (1969)
Matthew Hunter Milligan (2013), Numa Letcher Reid
(1932) and David Bourke Milligan (1982)
Bell Family Middletown, Ohio
Fishel Family Morton, Ill.
Zebulon J. Bell (2011) and Arlington L. Bell (2013)
Burke-Crotty Family Raymore, Mo.
Alexander Fishel (2006), Andrew Fishel (2008), Samuel
Glover Family Mercer, Pa.
James Burke (2004), Joseph Burke (2007), William Crotty
(2010), Matthew Crotty (2012), Thomas Burke (2008) and
Daniel Burke (2006)
Campbell Family Lakeland, Fla.
Cory Glover (2011),
Brent Glover (2009)
Clint Glover (1980)
Hayden Family Rising Sun, Md.
Preiss Family Lubbock, Texas
Elwood Preiss (1948), Austin Preiss (2013) and James
Rickert Family Chandler and Scottsdale, Ariz.
Sam Rickert (2010), Marty Rickert (2012), Alec Rickert
(2007) and Ethan Rickert (2008)
Sims Family Richmond, Va.
Ian Macalaster Campbell (2012) and Trevor Shea
Johny Hayden III (2009) and Matthew Hayden (2012)
Alexander Sims (2012), Bill Sims (1953) and Christopher
Cooke Family Jackson, Miss.
Koellein Family Dickson, Tenn.
Sisson Family Torrance, Calif.
Campbell Cooke (2013), Jay Cooke (1975) and Jack
Mayhew Franklin Koellein Jr. (1980),
Tate Emil Koellein
Evan Mayhew Koellein (2011)
Franklin Koellein (1954)
Derek Sisson (2009),
Dillon Sisson (2013) and
4/30/14 10:21 AM
For God and Country // ACHIEVEMENTS
For God and Country
Many young men exchange their Scout uniforms for fatigues, dress blues or battle dress uniforms. NESA salutes the
Eagle Scouts shown below who are serving our nation in all branches of the armed forces. Recognize another Eagle by
completing the form found at nesa.org/eaglegodandcountry.
Skelton Family Temple Terrace, Fla.
William Paul Skelton III (1971), William Paul Skelton IV
(2002), Michelle Nadine Skelton (Girl Scout Gold, 2012)
and Joseph Daniel Skelton (2013)
Smith Family Elkridge, Md.
R. Scott Smith (1978)
and Cameron Scott Smith (2013)
2nd Lt. Kevin A. Booker
2nd Lt. Kevan J. O’Rear
Graduated with a Bachelor
of Science in business with a
major in finance from Wright
State University in Dayton,
Ohio. He was commissioned
as a second lieutenant in the
Military Intelligence Branch
and received the Oath of Office from retired Air Force Col.
Alan K. Booker, his father and previous Scoutmaster.
Graduated from the U.S.
Military Academy on May
25, 2013, with a Bachelor of
Science in nuclear engineering
and Portuguese. He will be
reporting to Fort Campbell, Ky.,
for his first assignment.
Petty Officer 3rd Class Brian Raphael
2nd Lt. Thomas Boots
U.S. Marine Corps
Recently promoted to petty
officer 3rd class and serving
as a personnel specialist at
U.S. Fleet Activities in Sasebo,
Japan. He works with the local
Boy Scout troop on base.
An Eagle Scout with Troop 82
in Anchorage, Alaska, Boots
graduated from Washington
State University and received
his commission in December
2012. He is attending basic
school at Camp Barrett in
Yeoman Justin Richard Romero
Steele Family League City, Texas
Romero has been accepted
to attend the Naval Academy
Preparatory School at Newport,
R.I., in the class convening
Petty Officer 3rd Class Matthew J. Conley
Matthew Steele (2011), Jeffrey Steele (2011), Andrew
Steele (2012) and Daniel Steele (2008)
Turner Family Fort Worth, Texas
Conley graduated basic
training in Great Lakes,
Ill., in October 2012,
completed advanced school
in Pensacola, Fla., in March
2013, graduating as an
aircraft support technician.
He then completed “C” school in San Diego, Calif., as
an electrician for MEP. He is stationed in Yokosuka,
Japan, aboard the USS George Washington, having just
completed the 2013 West Pacific patrol.
2nd Lt. Julian R. Stark
U.S. Air Force
Stark graduated from the U.S.
Air Force Academy (class of
2013) with a degree in military
and strategic studies. He
currently is at Goodfellow AFB
in Texas training to become an
Air Force intelligence officer.
Capt. Tracy D. Connors
U.S. Navy, Ret.
Randy Turner (1967), Chris Turner (1988), Cory Turner
(1993), Caleb Turner (2013) and R. Chip Turner (1967;
Distinguished Eagle Scout, Silver Buffalo)
Wyatt Family Hickory, N.C.
Frank Wyatt (1949), Burk Wyatt (1976), Scott Wyatt
(1981), Frankie Wyatt (2011), Charlie Hawkins (1950)
and Jerry Hester (1948)
conferred to Connors an
honorary doctorate in
leadership excellence. He also
delivered the commencement
address to the fall 2013 class.
The Volunteer Management
Handbook (2nd Ed.) was
published in 2012, his eighth handbook of charitablephilanthropic management since 1980. Connors serves
as associate district chairman for Venturing, Alachua
District, North Florida Council.
Lt. j.g. Donatus Weithman
Attended Ohio State University
on a Navy ROTC scholarship,
earning a bachelor’s in civil
engineering. He received his
Navy Pilot Wings of Gold and
is currently stationed in San
Diego flying MH-60S Sierra
4/23/14 1:22 PM
CLOSING SHOT // All Roads Lead ... Up
photograph by // RANDY
Philmont Scout Ranch serves as a home away from home for the Piland fatherson team. Eagle Scout Baden Piland, above, and his Eagle Scout dad, Randy,
convene at Philmont every summer. Baden has spent three summers working
on the Ranger staff, and Randy serves on the faculty of Philmont Training
Center’s Visual Storytelling Workshop.
Calling all Eagle Scout photographers: We’re looking for images
that represent the essence of Eagle Scouting. Send an email to
[email protected] with your name, the year you achieved
Eagle and any low-resolution images that you’d like us to consider.
We’ll showcase our favorites on future “Closing Shot” pages.
PILAND // EAGLE 1968
At the end of their summer workdays, the two enjoy hiking together — like the
above trip to the Tooth of Time summit — or hanging out at base camp.
You can find them exploring the wilds and working hard in the name of
Scouting this summer, as Randy returns for the third-annual photography
workshop (scouting.org/storytellingworkshops.aspx) and Baden works on staff
as a Mountain Trek coordinator.
4/22/14 2:22 PM