Eagle Scout receives National Heroism Award


March 23, 2000|By Lorraine Gingerich | Lorraine Gingerich,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

ERIC WILLIE of Glenwood has spent years in the Boy Scouts. Last summer, he put his Scout training into practice during a dramatic accident in which he saved a boy's life. Willie was attending Boy Scout Camp in Ottarri, Va.

Eleven-year-old Tyler Jacobs and another young Scout were working on their rowing merit badge under the supervision of Willie, 17, and fellow Scout Kelvin Edwards. To earn the badge they had to swamp the boat to learn how to maneuver it full of water. But the boat flipped and began to sink.

Tyler had snagged his life vest on the oar lock and was trapped under the boat. Willie, a lifeguard, and Edwards were stationed 25 yards away on the pier. When the boys screamed for help, Willie and Edwards jumped into the water and swam to their aid.

Edwards held the boat up while Willie tried to free the Scout. Because the vest had become so entangled in the oarlock, Willie had to rip off the younger Scout's vest to free him.

Tyler, without a life vest, was taken ashore by Willie. For his courageous efforts, Willie received the National Heroism Award at a ceremony March 9 of the Blue Ridge Council of the Boy Scouts of America in Roanoke, Va.

Baseball Hall of Famer Brooks Robinson was the presenter and speaker. Ron Appler, Scoutmaster of Troop 757 in Glenwood, praises Willie's commitment to Scouts.

"He's a terrific boy," said Appler. "He has a lot of enthusiasm, drive and concern for others."

Willie joined the Boy Scouts on his 5th birthday. His goal from an early age was to become an Eagle Scout. To achieve the highest rank in the Boy Scouts, a boy must earn 21 merit badges and complete a community service project. As part of his Eagle Scout project, Willie planned and built a playground at Gethsemane Baptist Church

In December, Willie became an Eagle Scout.

Willie, a senior at Glenelg High School, plans to study architecture in college. He also is a member of the 4-H Volunteer Fire Department and works at Princeton Sports in Columbia.

Land stewardship award

James and Ruth Welling of Sykesville, farmers who rent and own land in western Howard County, were this year's recipients of the Clark Land Stewardship Award presented Tuesday at the George Howard Building.

The award was established in 1998 by the Howard County Conservancy and the Rouse Company Foundation to recognize individuals or organizations who work to protect or enhance land in Howard County.

The Wellings were chosen because of their efforts to conserve the soil and water resources on the land they own and rent. The Wellings have maintained good quality soil through the use of crop rotation, crop residue use and reduced tillage.

In May 1998, the Wellings retired 15 acres of flood plain and wetlands from grazing use. Twelve of those acres have been planted in native trees, and fencing has been installed to keep cattle out.

4-H awards

4-H members from Howard and Montgomery counties competed last month in a 4-H public speaking contest.

Angela Post won Blue and Reserve Champion in the Junior Radio category. Ben Post and Alex Post both won Blue and Champion for Senior Radio.

In the Senior Prepared Speech division Ben Post won Blue and Reserved Champion. Junior Prepared Speech winners were Angela Post, Blue and Champion, and Stephanie Simmens, Blue.

In the Clover and first-year category, Molly Simmens, Gloria Post, Tess Maseda and Becky Connor won participation ribbons.

Howard County 4-H offers opportunities for educational projects and community service, as well as having fun and making friends.

Information: Howard County Extension office, 410-313-2707.

Community theater

The Heritage Players, a community theater in Catonsville, presents "The Secret Garden" at Catonsville United Methodist Church, 6 Melvin Ave.

Glenwood Middle School sixth-grader Caroline Bowman will play the lead role of Mary Lennox.

Show dates are 8 p.m. tomorrow, Saturday, March 31, April 1, 7 and 8.

Tickets are $10; $6 for children.

A portion of the proceeds will go to the American Heart Association.

Information: 410-869-9174.

Ice show

The Columbia Figure Skating Club will present "Swing into Spring with Music Music Music" at 1 p.m. and 4: 30 p.m. April 1 and 2 at the Columbia Ice Rink.

Local residents taking part include Melissa Anderson, Anna Schoonover and Carrie Schoonover of Clarksville; Mariah Braxton of Woodstock; Elicia Epperlein of Woodbine; and Emily Hayes of Sykesville.

Lauren Capps of Glenelg will skate a lead in "Cinderella."

Rebecca Jenning of Highland will skate a lead in the Disney medley.

Rachel Stern of Marriottsville will skate the lead in "Evita."

Shows will be April 1 and 2. The cost is $8.50; younger than 3, free. Information: 410-461-9948

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