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Two Pa. teens achieve Eagle Scout rank

June 23, 2009

MERCERSBURG, Pa. - On May 17, Boy Scout Troop 28's newest Eagle Scouts, Derek Todd and Dakota Bricker, were presented with the Eagle Medal, at a special Eagle Court of Honor.

Derek is the son of Mr. and Mrs. Timothy Todd. Dakota is the son of Mr. and Mrs. Calvin Bricker Jr. Both boys attend James Buchanan High School, where Derek is a senior and Dakota is a junior. They have been involved in Scouting since first grade, as members of Cub Scout Pack 28, earning the Arrow of Light.

This Eagle Court of Honor was held in recognition of Feb. 8, 2010, the 100th anniversary of Scouting in America. The ceremony took place with a historical theme, at the Preaching Place behind the Negley Log House, at Rock Hill Farm, Conococheague Institute.

Dr. Walter Powell, executive director of the Conococheague Institute, was dressed in colonial attire as he called the assembly to order by firing a musket.

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Assistant Scoutmaster Don Pierce was master of ceremony. He called on Derek and Dakota to place flowers in front of the podium in memory of their grandmothers, who recently passed away; Anna Todd on April 2, and Pauline Myers on April 7.

A moment of silence was held, followed by the invocation, given by Pastor Michael Baughman of First United Methodist Church of Mercersburg.

Directed by assistant Patrol Leader Doug Peterson, the Scouts of Troop 28 presented the colors, followed by the Pledge of Allegiance, the Scout Oath and the Scout Law. Troop 28 committee chairman Ron Keefer officially convened the Court of Honor.

Committee member Calvin Bricker Jr. directed a ceremony explaining the meaning of the Scout Oath and Scout Law, as Scouts lit a candelabrum.

Committee member Jeff Goetz presented "100 Scouts." For every 100 boys who join the Boy Scouts, only two become Eagle Scouts. Powell gave a brief description of the Eagle Service projects completed by Derek and Dakota at Rock Hill Farm. Derek's project was to construct a trail to a 1760s graveyard, clearing the cemetery, probing for buried headstones and cleaning and resetting the stones.

Dakota's project was to refurbish the basement of the Negley Log House from dirt floor to brick floor, and to construct and install 18th-century shelving and bins. He also collected donations of crocks, barrels, jugs, baskets and buckets to reproduce the look of an 18th-century cellar.

Committee member and Eagle Scout Gordon Vink Jr. presented the new Eagle Scouts with the Eagle Scout Challenge, and administered the new oath, the Eagle Scout Promise. Scoutmaster Maynard Gress presented the Eagle Scout medals. Derek Todd presented his mentor pin to Scoutmaster Gress, and Dakota presented his to past Scoutmaster Tim Todd.

State Rep. Todd Rock presented Derek and Dakota with a citation from the Pennsylvania House of Representatives. Committee Chairman Keefer presented an Eagle bolo tie to each of the new Eagle Scouts.

Assistant Scoutmaster Dale Mellott closed the ceremony by reading a passage from a speech given by President Theodore Roosevelt in 1910.

The benediction was then given by Pastor Baughman.

The ceremony was followed by a reception. Family, friends and guests were then given an opportunity to view Derek's and Dakota's service projects.

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