What are the odds that a small Boy Scout troop in the small coastal community of Cambria would produce five Eagle Scouts in a little less than a year, from March 2018 to February 2019, with a sixth scout nearly there?
The accomplishments of the students from Cambria’s Troop 217 were celebrated June 5 at an Eagle Scout Court of Honor. The young men, in the order of earning their Eagle ranks, are:
• Nate Ehlers, who achieved his Eagle Scout rank on March 29, 2018. For his Eagle project, he built a gazebo for the Small Wonders Preschool Playground at the Community Presbyterian Church. (The church’s Fellowship Hall is where the Court of Honor ceremony was held.) Ehlers is a 2017 Coast Union High School grad who will attend Cuesta Community College and plans to transfer to CSU Stanislaus to complete his degree in psychology.
• Spencer Caserio attained his Eagle rank in September 2018. For his project, he rebuilt six information kiosks at the San Simeon State Park Campground. He and other scouts totally revamped the kiosks’ dilapidated doors laced with broken wood, rusted locks and hinges and scratched or cracked glass. Caserio is a 2019 grad from Morro Bay High School. He’ll attend Western Washington University in Bellingham to study environmental science with a marine emphasis.
• Gio Espinoza became an Eagle scout in December 2018, after building sound-isolation panels for the sound studio at Coast Union High School. He graduated from CUHS in 2018, and attends Azusa Pacific University, majoring in commercial music with a focus on audio recording.
• Zack Azevedo reached Eagle status in January of this year. His Eagle project was replacing the flagpole at the Santa Rosa Cemetery in Cambria. He’s a 2019 Coast grad who will attend Cal Poly to major in ag business.
• David May became an Eagle in February 2019 after completing his project of replacing the rotten wall separating the walkway and playground at the Small Wonders Playschool. He’s a 2019 Coast grad who will attend Cuesta before transferring to Cal Poly and then to medical school.
Sage Friedman, who completed his Eagle project of rebuilding the amphitheater safety railing around the outdoor stage at Camp Ocean Pines, has been attending a private high school in New Hampshire, but will return to go before his Eagle Scout Board of Review on June 27, according to Scoutmaster Dave Ehlers.
The troop will hold a separate Eagle Scout Court of Honor for him. And, as the newly minted Eagles fly away to the rest of their lives, Scoutmaster Ehlers is facing a depleted roster of young people to enjoy what scouting has to offer and perhaps achieve Eagle honors. He’s hoping that more students at all levels soon will sign up to be scouts.
“With so many of our scouts reaching the rank of Eagle” and turning 18, he said, the leaders are reaching out to our community and its students.
And because dedication to scouting often starts in grammar school, Ehlers said he’s proud to announce that “the Cub Scout pack has been revitalized and is meeting again.”
Who can be a Boy Scout?
For the first time in its 100-plus-year history, Boy Scouts of America, or Scouts BSA, is open to both young men and young women, ages 11 to 17 years, according to the program’s website at www.scouting.org, which states that the year-round program for boys and girls in fifth grade through high school provides fun, friendship, adventure, learning, challenges and responsibility.
Cub scouting is open to youngsters in kindergarten through fifth grade. In the traditional scouting experience, service, community engagement and leadership development become increasingly important parts of the program as the young people lead their own activities and work their way toward earning scouting’s highest rank, Eagle Scout.