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41 Eagle Scouts soared under Hardinge's leadership

Longtime scoutmaster of Hagerstown's Troop 10 is roasted, recognized

December 02, 2010|By MATTHEW UMSTEAD | matthewu@herald-mail.com
  • Thomas Hunt Hardinge III gets a hug from his granddaughter, Madilyn Easterday, while being honored and roasted Nov. 27 as the longtime Scoutmaster of Troop 10. Beside Hardinge is Madilyn's mom, Katie Easterday. The audience enjoyed a slideshow of Troop 10 Scouting activities during Hardinge's tenure.
Kevin G. Gilbert/Staff Photographer

HAGERSTOWN — Thomas Hunt Hardinge III did not achieve the rank of Eagle Scout growing up in Hagerstown, but an extraordinary percentage of boys have done just that in his 25 years of Scoutmaster leadership with Boy Scout Troop 10.Hardinge, who was honored and roasted Nov. 27 at Elks Lodge 378 by members of Troop 10 and the Mason-Dixon Council of the Boys Scouts of America, has witnessed 41 Scouts earn the Eagle Scout rank in his tenure.Scott Paddack, committee chairman for Troop 10 and senior district executive in charge of Scouting in Washington County, said Hardinge has an ability to keep Scouts interested in staying involved in Scouting.“Hunt is one of those guys who you can count on, you know what you have,” said Paddack, who has known Hardinge for at least 30 years. “And he’s always willing to put the boys first and lead as a coach or a teacher versus doing the things for the kids, and that’s what Boy Scouting is about.”On Nov. 28 at Trinity Lutheran Church in Hagerstown, the charter organization for Troop 10, Hardinge was presented with The Lamb Award, a national recognition for Lutheran adults.The award acknowledges the 56-year-old’s distinguished service in fostering spiritual growth of youths through church and Scouting.Paddack and program emcee Bill Abeles also announced to a crowd of about 125 people that Hardinge would be presented with the Servant of Youth award for his service as a Lutheran adult to youths and ministry to young people.Hardinge also was presented with a hand-carved representation of the First Class Scouting badge in sugar pine wood.“I have enjoyed every minute and I just absolutely love to camp and I love the guys and the people and the adults that I’ve been associated with over the last 25 or more years. It’s been an absolute blast and I can’t see why anyone wouldn’t want to do it,” Hardinge said after enduring some good-natured ribbing.Organizers had Hardinge sit on a small stage in a camping chair next to a tent that was set up next to a few evergreen trees for the program to represent Hardinge’s environment of choice — camping.Hardinge’s sons, Daniel and Tom, who became Eagle Scouts, recounted stories and “Hunt-isms.”“God forbid that you ever did something really stupid like forget your tent or food,” said Daniel Hardinge of the “rip” that would follow.Among other stories, Tom Hardinge, in a recorded video message, recalled being locked in a locker by some of the older boys of the troop when he was a young boy.“When they did let me out finally, I never saw my old man so (upset),” Tom Hardinge said.In addition to the awards and roasting, Mason-Dixon Council board President Jeanne F. Singer read a letter from national Scouting leaders commending Hardinge for his service.The Mason-Dixon Council serves youths in Washington, Franklin and Fulton counties.

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