Andover Townsman, Andover, MA

June 6, 2013

Scout Troop 76 gives back to former leader

The Andover Townsman

---- — Scouts of Ballard Vale Troop 76 came to the aid of the family of a past leader recently by helping with the daunting task of cleaning out his house of 20 years as he made the move to an assisted living residence.

Youth and adult troop members joined together in the effort for “Mr. B,” who began his relationship with the troop in the 1980s when his son, Chris, crossed over from Cub Scouts. Mr. B went on to participate in countless campouts, weeks at summer camp and canoe trips as well as serve for several years as troop committee chairman and merit badge counselor. He continued his involvement with the troop long after his son earned his Eagle Scout.

When failing health necessitated Mr. B’s move from his home, 23 Scouts and adult members of Troop 76, known as The Super Ducks, stepped up to assist the process, even though some had never met Mr. B before, Scoutmaster Don Milligan said.

The Scouts gathered at Mr. B’s house last month in place of their regular troop meeting and spent 51/2 hours — a total of more than 70 man hours — working in teams cleaning out the house and garage. As gratitude for their work, many of the Scouts went home with some of Mr. B’s artifacts, including Boy Scout books from the 1950s and old baseball cards.

“I could not have done this by myself, and with just the family, it would have taken weeks to do what they managed to finish in less than a day,” Mr. B’s son said.

Milligan called Troop 76 a hard-working group. “Give them a task, point them in the direction and try not to get run over as they charge into it,” he said.

Troop 76 is part of West Wind District, Yankee Clipper Council, Boy Scouts of America, and meets Friday nights at 7 at Ballard Vale United Church, 23 Clark Road, Andover.