I wanted to write after witnessing my first Eagle Scout Court of Honor and record my feelings before they flit away. My heart was full listening to the scout leaders, Congressman Poe, and the five young men receiving their Eagle Scout Award. A lot was said about the young men becoming the future leaders of our church, our city, our state, our nation… Words to describe them reflected the Scout Law—like courage and honor. Congressman Poe, who was a judge for many years, stated that in all 25,000 of the criminal cases he oversaw not one of the offenders was an Eagle Scout. He believed it to be a testament to the good of the Boy Scouts of America program. The boys are just too busy doing other things to get into any trouble. When he was done speaking, he presented each Eagle Scout with an American flag that had been flown over the White House along with a certificate of authenticity.
As each of the young men stepped up to the podium to say a few words—all of them were grateful to their parents, scout and church leaders, coaches or some particular person who pushed them to earn this award—I looked at my oldest son wearing his Webelos uniform and imagined him achieving Eagle Rank. I thought every boy in the room is dreaming about becoming an Eagle Scout and every mother in the room wants her son to live up to the Eagle Scout ideals. I couldn’t see my husband sitting in an “Eagle’s Nest” on the stand, but I thought of him and what it must have felt like for him when he got his Eagle. Both of his brothers are Eagle Scouts and his dad was their Scoutmaster for many years. The fathers of the five boys each had a chance to speak and a few got choked up while expressing their love for their sons. There were jokes about being tired, being literally pushed, and reference was made to Philmont Camp when someone lost the food on the last day. So much work went into getting those boys to set goals and then achieve them.
So much work went into the Court of Honor. One of the moms expressed to me how much like a wedding it felt in the way of preparing for it. The building was exquisitely decorated with pictures of the scouts, pictures of eagles, statues of eagles, banners reflecting the Boy Scout motto “Be Prepared”, American flags, little evergreen trees and other patriotic memorabilia. Afterwards, they served food catered by Chick-Fil-A. They added to the brownies and cheesecake with Blue Bell ice cream and cake. I got to help serve the cake. I was instructed to give one piece per person unless it was one of the five new Eagle Scouts. They could have seconds if they wanted. A lot of work went into setting up the event and lots of work went into cleaning up after the celebration. I took the kids home while Josh helped take stuff down and set up the building for church tomorrow. When he got home, Josh reported that it was awesome being a part of the clean up crew, too, because everyone helped. Scouts know and do their duty.
I know it’s going to be a lot of work getting my boys ready to go out into the world and lead successful lives. I’m glad that we have the Scout program to help them learn to set goals and then get that awesome feeling when they have achieved them. I’m glad that we were able to attend the Eagle Court of Honor so that my boys could catch the spirit of scouting and my Webelos could continue to work hard to get his awards. Seth will get his uniform next month and he is very excited to be a new Cub Scout—even more so now that he has attended an Eagle Scout Court of Honor.