A recent article from the New York Post’s editorial board succinctly sums up what millions of Scouts across America know to be true — what a tragedy if America were to lose such a venerable organization with an indispensable mission.
What we all know to be true is that Scouting instills the incredible values noted by the Post — compassion, leadership, patriotism, self-reliance and discipline — that have positively influenced the lives of millions of Americans who have participated in the Scouting movement, as well as millions more in the communities in which they live.
It’s easiest to identify Scouting with its most famous alumni, ranging from athletes (Nolan Ryan or Michael Jordan) to business leaders (Rex Tillerson or Bill Gates) and politicians (John F. Kennedy or George W. Bush). However, its arguable that Scouting’s greatest impact on America isn’t from its most famous alumni, but those unheralded Scouts from all walks of life who make their communities better each and every day, including:
- Kieran Foley, Drew Scalice, Ryan Day, Joseph Dietrich and Tyler Armagan: These former Cub Scouts (Pack 242 from Middletown, New Jersey,) were recently recognized for saving two small children whose sled careened into an icy pond.
- Ross Johnson: A 20-year-old student Eagle Scout and student at Jacksonville University, who saved a young person from drowning in Neptune Beach, Florida, in early 2020.
- Kaial Hajik: The 13-year-old creator of the device called the LifeBoKx, a kit with life-saving equipment that could be installed along beaches that include life vests, a lifesaver and CPR instructions.
- Elias Yatraki: An 11-year-old from Denver, Colorado, who saved his younger brother thanks to the Heimlich maneuver that he had just learned as part of his Cub Scout CPR class.
While the politicians, business leads and entertainers who are former Scouts are the ones who tend to receive the most attention, these are just a few of the millions of young men and women serve as the bedrock of communities all across America.
What a tragedy it would be to lose the future contributions of the Elias Yatrakis, the Kaial Hajiks, the Ross Johnsons and the Kieran Foleys, to say nothing of the contributions to American society from future generations.