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Five Spanish Springs scouts ready to soar with the Eagles
by Jessica Mosebach
Feb 12, 2008 | 1244 views | 0 0 comments | 7 7 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Photo courtesy of Kenneth Quirk - Local boy scouts expanded 15 tent pads at a girls' summer camp in Quincy, California. The project was coordinated by eagle scout Kenneth Quirk, 18, of Spanish Springs troop #710.
Photo courtesy of Kenneth Quirk - Local boy scouts expanded 15 tent pads at a girls' summer camp in Quincy, California. The project was coordinated by eagle scout Kenneth Quirk, 18, of Spanish Springs troop #710.
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<a href= mailto:dreid@dailysparkstribune.com>Tribune/Debra Reid</a> Eagle scout Kenneth Quirk of Troop #710 organized a construction project at an LDS girl's summer camp in Quincy, Calif.
Tribune/Debra Reid Eagle scout Kenneth Quirk of Troop #710 organized a construction project at an LDS girl's summer camp in Quincy, Calif.
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Scouting is in the Quirk family’s blood. This Sunday, 18-year-old Kenneth Quirk will join the five previous generations of men in his family to have learned how to camp, hike and think critically about American history.

Kenneth will be joining the ranks of Eagle Scouts along with four other Spanish Springs High School students. The ceremony takes on Sunday at 7 p.m. at Eagle Canyon Chapel at Church of Latter Day Saints in Spanish Springs.

"There's a heritage of scouting in my family," Kenneth said. "My dad, out of all his brothers, was the only one to make Eagle Scout."

His father, Robert, has served as a scoutmaster during Kenneth's journey and has watched his son and his friends transform into well-rounded young men.

"These boys really are committed," Robert said.

Scouting offers opportunities to bond with friends, serve the community and explore potential vocations, all of which are meant to enrich the scout's adolescence and early adulthood.

"I believe the primary function — the outcome of this program — is to work with these boys and point them in the direction where they'll become useful men," Robert said. "Besides that, it'll make them citizens."

Scouts take an oath in which they vow to be accountable to God, their families and to do good to all people all at times.

"He assumes a motto: to do a good turn daily," Robert said. "And then his slogan is 'be prepared.' "

To qualify for their final badge, each teen was required to complete a project to demonstrate their leadership ability.

"He has to find an opportunity where he can benefit somebody and he's on his own," Robert Quirk said. "He has to find a cause that he can provide for, then he asks what he can do to approach the community and say, 'Can I serve you in this way?' "

The scout is responsible for raising the funds, setting the date and time, recruiting other scouts and deciding on the techniques and solutions to fulfill that need. Scouts are accountable to the scout office on how they accomplished their task, how it benefited the community and assess what they personally learned from the project.

Among the scouts earning their Eagle this Sunday is Reed McCue, 18.

"I learned a lot of things like leadership, life-saving skills and personal management," McCue said. "It prepares for you for life and things ahead that are really useful."

For his project, McCue worked on the community's parks.

"I chose a few parks around the neighborhood and decided to finish the wood on the playground equipment," he said.

After graduation, McCue plans to go on a mission for his church, return home and study for a master's degree in law enforcement and eventually join the Secret Service.

Fellow scout Andrew Hansen, now 18, joined the Cub Scouts at age 8.

"There's a lot of things I know a little bit about," Hansen said of his experience in scouting. "One of the biggest things I learned was toward the end, about a month away from turning 18, I still had a lot to go and you just have to keep going until you get away even though it seems far away. You finish it and it'll be worth it."

Hansen recruited friends to repaint backstops of the baseball fields at Shadow Mountain Park on Labor Day after he noticed they were deteriorating. He said helping out with maintenance work was a favor to city employees who have other pressing projects to complete.

"I don't think it was a major thing, and I never actually used the fields, but I felt like I was paying (the city of Sparks) back for all the stuff they had done for us," Hansen said.

David Wagner, 18, has been in the Boy Scouts since the age of 12.

"I learned how to be diligent with my time," Wagner said. "I would definitely recommend scouting to boys my age."

Wagner built five 10-foot-long picnic benches for his church for his Eagle project with the help of 30 parents and friends.

"The experience managing was definitely valuable, to be able to balance all the tasks at the same time," Wagner said. "I enjoyed meeting the parents and getting the planning part of the project done.

Wagner said he hopes to go to college and major in science with the goal of becoming a university professor. Wagner said he will first go on a mission and "eventually get married."

For his project, Kenneth Quirk found a need to extend tent pads for a girls camp in Quincy, Calif. So he took 13 people with him on a Saturday and enlarged the pads from a 10-by-12 foot size to 10 by 16.

"My mom goes up to this camp a lot and dad and I would always fix the tent pad she would use, thinking she can get this one next year, but as soon as we got there, someone else would have it," he said.

Like the others, Kenneth said he will also go on mission after graduation. He said he wants to follow in his dad's footsteps when he works at Lincoln Heating and plans to open his own business.

Devrin Sumrall, the fifth scout who will receive Eagle honors on Sunday, could not be reached for comment.

The Boy Scouts of America was instituted on Feb. 8, 1910 and chartered by Congress in 1916. Since then, the goal of the program has been to help boys and young men develop character, exercise responsible citizenship and train them in physical fitness. It can be a rigorous curriculum and not all boys who start even as young as Cub Scouts stay committed long enough to achieve Eagle Scout, Robert said.

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