If you look around Wheeling, you might not realize that many parts of the community have been made by Eagle Scouts like Colton Gessler, Jonathon Benson and James Cartwright .
“There’s a long lasting impact on our community that scouts are making all the time,” said Christian Lee, scoutmaster of Troop 6.
Becoming an Eagle Scout was a long journey that these 3 young men began together as Tiger Scouts. The high honor didn’t come without hard work, Jonathan, James, and Colton had to earn 21 merit badges, serve in a leadership position, and complete a large scale community service project before becoming an official Eagle scout.
“Well you know they really I’ve seen a lot of them since they were cub scouts 8 or 9 years old and I’ve watched them come to the point where they’re young men now where they’re responsible for themselves and they’re responsible for helping others and bringing others along and teaching them what they’ve learned along the way. So they are already using the leadership skills they’ve learned in scouts in their school in their play and in scouts itself,” said Lee.
Their different projects are recognizable already in Wheeling. Colton created a flagpole at Greggsville ball field dedicated to his brother that passed away, Jonathan worked on community benches and two Adirondack chairs at Heritage Port in memory of David Slaysman who passed away, and James created community benches and signs.
“This is what makes it all worthwhile when I see a young man come from basically being a kid to a young man and progressing to the rank of Eagle scout because it says something that will stay with them their whole life and it says something about their character and future employers can look at that and know who they’re dealing with in some manner just from that right off the bat,” said Lee.
Friends, family, and younger scouts watched as the three young men pledged to uphold the ideals of scouting for the rest of their lives. When they were official together, their smiles told it all.