Local Scouts recognized for outstanding achievements
Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts and adult volunteers were all recently recognized for their 2016 achievements at the Boy Scouts of America’s annual Mountain District Eagle Recognition Banquet. The Mountain District is part of the Northeast Georgia Council, representing Gilmer, Fannin, Union and Towns counties.
Every March, the Mountain District recognizes prior-year Eagle Scouts, as well as Cub Scouts, who have earned the Arrow of Light rank. Respectively, the ranks of Eagle and Arrow of Light are the highest ranks that can be achieved in Boy Scouting and Cub Scouting.
In 2016, the Mountain District had six boys earn the high rank of Eagle Scout. Nicholas Bradley, Tyler Kepley and Skylar Smith from Gilmer County were recognized. Nationally, only 4 percent of all boys who join the Boy Scouts of America attain the rank of Eagle.
Noted author, Eagle Scout historian and Fox News contributor, Alvin Townley, known for his book “Legacy of Honor: The Values and Influence of America’s Eagle Scouts,” was this year’s keynote speaker. Townley used inspiring stories of famous Eagle Scouts to challenge our local Eagle Scouts to uphold the principles of Scouting and to make a difference as they embark in adulthood.
Arrow of Light awardees
Sixteen Cub Scouts who earned the Arrow of Light in the Mountain District were Zachary Dutton, Kristopher Ballew, Lennon Criswell and Tanner Perigo, all from Gilmer. Others were Joseph Farmer, Garrison Hamm, Skye Perkins, Ian Delashmitt, Dylan Galitello, Kyle Poling, Lucius Crubaugh, Cole Montgomery, Andrew Young, Jeremy Renbarger, Vance Davis and Joseph Hugh from Fannin, Union and Towns counties. The Mountain District recognized several adult leaders and volunteers for excellence in training and achievement as well. Gilmer’s own Sid May was awarded 2016’s District Award of Merit, which is the highest service award a district can bestow on an adult Scouter.
The Mountain District, though the smallest in the Northeast Georgia Council, is also the fastest growing, in 2016 growing by almost 20 percent in youth membership. This growth is coming primarily from recruitment in Ellijay’s Cub Scouting units — Cubmaster David Grubb’s Pack 404, chartered by Pleasant Hills Montessori School, and Cubmaster Julie Kepley’s Pack 402, chartered by Ellijay First United Methodist Men.
Other local Scout units are Scoutmaster Greg Withrow’s Boy Scout Troop 404, chartered by Gates Chapel United Methodist Church; Scoutmaster Dwight Broussard’s Boy Scout Troop 402, chartered by Ellijay First United Methodist Men; Crew Advisor Sid May’s Venture Crew 402; and the Gilmer Sheriff’s Explorer Post.
Scouting has a deep heritage in Gilmer County, and our local Scout units provide many hours of tireless service to our community. If you would like to know more about Scouting opportunities in Ellijay or the Mountain District, or if you would like to donate to this year’s Friends of Scouting Campaign, contact Jon Jones, Mountain District chairman, at 706-669-9720.
You can also find information about upcoming events at nega-bsa.org/districts/mountain/.