Local scouts sweep NC American Legion awards

Published 12:10 am Tuesday, June 22, 2021

SALISBURY — Three local Boy Scout leaders have been recognized for their service by the American Legion Department of North Carolina in an unprecedented sweep of the organization’s annual awards.

Marny Hendrick received Scouter of the Year, David Wilson received Scoutmaster of the Year and David Roof received Cubmaster of the Year. All three men were recommended for the awards by Troop 448 Scoutmaster Emeritus Jack Kepley and recognized Monday at the Harold B. Jarrett American Legion Post.

Kepley, 97, has been involved with scouting for 84 years. He’s a charter member of American Legion Post 342 and a World War II veteran. He was awarded Scouter of the Year in 2013.

Kepley said he’s never seen three people from one county win all three state awards from the American Legion.

“I don’t think it will ever happen again,” Kepley said.

Hendrick has been a scout leader since 1980 and worked in Rowan County since his family moved to Salisbury in 1986. He’s served in a number of leadership positions within the district, including district chair, chair of Friends of Scouting, a member of the district board of review and vice chair of the Eagle Scout board of review.

Kepley credited Hedrick for keeping the standards for becoming an Eagle Scout high.

Wilson joined the Boy Scouts in 1966 and was made an Eagle Scout four years later. He remained a part of the scouts for the previous 50 years, accrued a long list of accolades and served in a number of positions. Of Wilson’s scouts, 57 have been awarded Eagle.

Roof has been involved with the scouts since 1978 and serves as cubmaster of Pack 443 at St. John’s Lutheran Church. His years of service with the scouts earned him awards that include Cubmaster of the Year, Webelo Leader of the Year and a District Award of Merit.

Central North Carolina Council Field Director Jeff Bays said he has never heard of three people in one district winning the American Legion awards.

“There is nobody more deserving than these guys because, if it weren’t for these guys here, we wouldn’t have the scouting organization we have,” Bays said.

Bays said the area is great for scouting because of its outdoor offerings and the great community support it receives.

Hendrick said receiving a state-level award is an honor, but people in scout leadership do not do it for recognition. Hendrick said he believes in what the program teaches young people, and there are parallels between what scouting and the American Legion promote.

Monday was also a regular meeting of the Harold B. Jarrett Post, which installed its officers for the coming year. Harry Agner was named post commander, with S. Eric Kissner as first vice commander and Monte Bruce as second vice commander.

The remaining officers for the 2021-2022 year are as follows:

• Bob Price, adjutant

• Daniel Haddock, assistant adjutant

• Harold Andrews, chaplain

• Jeff Cannon, assistant chaplain

• Eli Basinger, sergeant at arms

• John Farr, assistant sergeant at arms

• Wayne Kennerly, finance officer

• Charlie Frick, assistant finance officer

• Hercules Shannon, service officer

• Queen Williams, historian

• Brad Jordan, member at large

• Past commander: George Sprague

Auxiliary officers are:

• Queen Williams, president

• Julie Smith, vice president

• Lynn Coughenour, secretary and treasurer

• Phyllis Richardson, chaplain

• Angie Allen, sergeant at arms

• Claire Allen, historian

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About Carl Blankenship

Carl Blankenship has covered education for the Post since December 2019. Before coming to Salisbury he was a staff writer for The Avery Journal-Times in Newland and graduated from Appalachian State University in 2017, where he was editor of The Appalachian.

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