Posted By RichC on November 26, 2019
Most men I know can rattle off a few milestone moments in their life as they bumbled their way through being a child, then teenager and finally an “on-your-own” adult. One of the organizations that once helped young men learn responsibility and integrity (and hopefully still does) was the Boy Scouts. With good leadership, most Troops can begin with a Tenderfoot and give him mini-milestones of growth and responsibility. Although my BSA Troop 124 disbanded before I earned Eagle Scout, Still the structure was instrumental in giving me tools and teaching me character in order to mature from boyhood to manhood. As the BSA trademark line goes, Prepared. For Life.™
The reason I was even thinking about this was due to cleaning out my tool chest this past weekend, Buried under the top tray was a “dangerous” tool … a hatchet that was awarded to me in 1972 while in the Boy Scouts. This milestone “adult tool” was given to only one scout to carry and be responsible with while on campouts, etc. As one of the Patrol leaders (Crow Patrol – caw, caw) and highest level scout in our Troop at the time, it was my responsibility. I felt a sense of moving from one station in life to another …one that demanded less childish behavior and someone who was now expected to be a leader … on the way to being an adult.
Lesson: Metering out small milestones is a great way for mentors to teach boys how to become men. Thank you to all those men in my life both within organizations like the Boy Scouts or athletics … and those friends and family who guided me through those formative years.