Wyatt Huggins, life scout with Boy Scouts Troop 637 in Wagoner, is one step closer to becoming an Eagle Scout: the highest rank attainable in the Scouts BSA program of the Boy Scouts of America.
Part of becoming an Eagle Scout is to lead a group of people, fund materials and complete a project that will benefit a community. That is exactly what he did at the Lincoln Enrichment Center in Wagoner.
Huggins, 17, and his cousin who works for Brighter Futures, noticed kids who attended the volunteer-based, Lincoln Enrichment Center, would often track mud in after a rainy day. There wasn’t a proper walkway. Brighter Futures operates at the LEC every Monday as a free enrichment program for the Wagoner community.
Ding. Ding. Ding. It became a perfect idea for his Eagle Project. He could build a walkway.
After filling out a hefty amount of paperwork, Lincoln Enrichment Center staff agreed Huggins was the best man for the job.
Huggins asked his troop members at the previous scouts meeting, ages ranging from 9-17 years-old, if they’d be willing to help. About 10 members agreed. He then needed materials; woodchips to be exact. He ended up purchasing 30 yards worth of chips with help from his family and money out of his own pocket.
Thankfully, Huggins said his grandfather had a tractor with a front end loader so they didn’t have to just use wheelbarrows.
Six hours later, the project was completed in pristine condition. No more muddy feet.
“The people in charge of the program at Lincoln were overwhelmingly happy and said that kids can now go outside to the playground and not have muddy shoes,” said Huggins’ troop master, Jeff Winn. “Wyatt was a leader that day.”
Huggins turns 18 July 26, and part of the Eagle Scouts criteria is to complete a meaningful project, like the walkway, before becoming an adult. He also has to sit in front of a lengthy, Eagle Board of Review. Board members will look through a candidate’s entire scouting career, read over references, ask questions, and potentially ask for more work.
Huggins has been involved with the boy scouts since he was 5-years-old. His father, grandfather and uncle all became Eagle Scouts. According to eagleinternship.com, roughly five percent of all Boy Scouts achieve that rank.
Since it runs in his family, Huggins said he does not have a choice.
“If I left the scouts about a year ago, it wouldn’t have made any sense,” Huggins said. “I’ve been in this since the very beginning. If I left without getting Eagle, then I really didn’t accomplish much.”
Huggins will become a second generation Eagle once he passes his Eagle Board of Review, which he hopes to do in the near future. He also told Winn he plans on sticking around to help out with the troop.
“It always makes me happy when a young man wants to give back to the troop,” Winn said.
Troop 637 has been established for over 80 years in Wagoner. It was charted by the First United Methodist Church.
Huggins said he would like to thank Walker’s Hardware and Lumber, in Langley, for helping with the landscape timbers and Wagoner Lumber, for the rebar.