PARSIPPANY — Two young men were charged with lofty marching orders Saturday as they received the highest rank bestowed by Boy Scouts of America.
Facing a crowd of some 100 family members, friends and community leaders, the two 18-year-olds swore with solemn faces their allegiance to the Scout brotherhood during their Eagle Scout Court of Honor at Parsippany-Troy Hills Elks Lodge 2078.
“The eagle represents an understanding of community and nation, and a deep respect for both,” said Bruce Benson, Troop Committee Chairman for the Troop. He said the award represents the completion of a long process after years of commitment to that effort.
As the pair received their long-awaited Eagle Badge, they were joined by parents John and Terri Summa and Keith and Kim Porcelli. Kim pinned the Eagle Badge on Ryan and John pinned the Eagle Badge on Jack, each on the shirt pocket over their hearts.
The Eagle Scout Award is Scouting’s highest rank and among its most familiar icons. Men who have earned it count it among their most treasured possessions. Those who missed it by a whisker remember exactly which requirement they didn’t complete. Americans from all walks of life know that being an Eagle Scout is a great honor. The award is more than a badge. It’s a state of being. The Eagle Scout may have received the badge as a boy, but you earn it every day as a man. In the words of the Eagle Scout Promise, they do your best each day to make their training and example, their rank and their influence count strongly for better Scouting and for better citizenship in the troop, in their community, and in their contacts with other people. And to this they pledge their sacred honor.
Since its introduction in 1911, the Eagle Scout rank has been earned by more than two million young men. Only 5% of the Boy Scouts actually earn this rank.
The requirements for the Eagle Scout rank are as follows:
- Be active in your troop and patrol for at least six months as a Life Scout.
- Demonstrate Scout spirit by living the Scout Oath and Law in your everyday life.
- Earn 21 merit badges, including the 12 that are required-First Aid, Citizenship in the Community, Citizenship in the Nation, Citizenship in the World, Communications, Personal Fitness, Emergency Preparedness or Lifesaving, Environmental Science, Personal Management, Swimming or Hiking or Cycling, Camping, and Family Life.
- Serve actively in an approved position of responsibility for a period of six months after becoming a Life Scout.
- Plan, develop, and lead others in carrying out a service project worthy of an Eagle Scout. 6. Take part in a Scoutmaster conference.
- Appear before a board of review of prominent persons, and satisfy them that you have done your best to understand and live up to the Scout Oath and Law and, in all ways, qualify for the Eagle Scout Award.
Jack began his Scouting experience in Cub Scout Pack 216 where he earned the Arrow of Light. At the end of fifth grade in 2012, with the help of his Den leaders, Mrs. Berardo and Mrs.Dowling, he advanced into Boy Scouts, joining Troop 173.
He quickly made many new friends as he moved through the ranks of Scouting under Scoutmasters John Worthington, Les Wu, and Michael Catapano. Jack has attended Big Trips to Philadelphia, Washington D.C. and Rhode Island, as well as, participating in National Youth Leader Training, and obtaining The Brotherhood in the Order of the Arrow. During the summer of 2017. Jack also attended the National Jamboree in West Virginia where he earned his Italian Interpreter strip and his Radio Merit Badge. He earned the NOA Camping Award and has completing 121 nights of camping. Jack was able to achieve the Scout” Scholar Athlete Award as well. Jack has been both a Patrol Leader and Assistant Senior Patrol Leader.
For his Eagle Project, Jack renovated an upstairs storage room in the Smith Baldwin Historical House in Parsippany. His crew cleaned out the room, removed the carpeting, and then proceeded to painted the room and and hallway adjacent. Two wood storage units were designed and built for the room. Throughout the process, he received guidance and words of encouragement from his Eagle Coach, John Worthington, his parents and sister, his Scoutmaster Michael Catapano, Troop 173 Committee Chair Bruce Benson and his Project Beneficiary, Mr. Tortorella. Jack greatly appreciated all the support that was given to him while he worked on the Project.
While a student at Parsippany Hills High School, Jack was involved with clubs, performed community service and worked as a Lifeguard at Lake Parsippany. He ran cross-country for 4 years, and was captain his senior year. He also played baseball and wrestled. He was part of Ski Club, Italian Club, National Honors Society, and Italian Honors Society. Outside of school, as a member of St. Christopher’s Church, Jack earned service hours as an Altar Server, and volunteered at Vacation Bible School. He hopes to continue to be active in his community as he embarks on the next chapter of his life as a Pharmacy Major at the University of Rhode Island in the fall.
Jack’s favorite parts of Scouting were hiking, white water rafting, and tenting. He also gained a lot of additional knowledge about the outdoors through Scouting which he believes will help him throughout his life.
Jack earned 25 Merit Badges:
Rifle Shooting, Swimming, Fingerprinting, Lifesaving, First Aid, Citizenship in the Nation, Canoeing, Citizenship in the World, Mammal Study, Personnel Management, Environmental Science, Golf, Radio, Camping, Communication. Reptile Amphibian, Family Life, Citizenship in the Community, Cooking, Personal Fitness, Fishing, Shotgun Shooting, Leatherwork, American Cultures and Entrepreneurship.
Ryan started Scouting in Cub Pack #218 in Parsippany earning his Arrow of Light to later on cross over to Troop #173 in 2012.
Ryan has held multiple positions of responsibilities within the Troop. He was an Instructor, Patrol Leader, Quartermaster, and a Guide. Ryan has camped overnight for 102 nights in a tent and 39 in a cabin. Ryan participated in 214 community service hours while he was a Scout. Ryan’s best memories involved activities shared with his close friends Jack Summa and Tommy Catapano.
Ryan was awarded the Scout Scholar Athlete Award in 2018, which recognizes his achievements in Scouts, academics, and athletics.
For Ryan’s Eagle project, he installed three new TV’s at the Parsippany PAL and created an advertising system so that the PAL can run their ads on the TV as well as for the community. He greatly appreciates all the help from his Eagle coaches, Juan Correa and John Worthington. Also thanks especially Paul Lomelo, his father, and help from Scouts for all their hard work on the project.
Ryan recently graduated from Parsippany Hills High School and will be attending County College of Morris in the fall to study Biology. He plans to get his Associates Degree after two years and transfer to a university.
Ryan has earned the following merit Badges: Art, Camping, Citizenship in the Community,
Citizenship in the Nation, Citizenship in the World, Communication, Cooking, Environmental Science, Family Life, First Aid, Fingerprinting, Leatherwork, Lifesaving, Mammal Study, Personal Fitness, Personal Management, Rifle Shooting, Reptile and Amphibian Study, Shotgun Shooting, Swimming and Welding.