Tuesday, October 06, 2015 • 11:41

Four honored in Eagle Scout ceremony

Eagle Scouts, left to right, Samuel McCuskey, Bannon Greer, Kerigan McCaffree, and Mitchell Rush.
June 04, 2014
Boy Scout Troop 620 held an Eagle Scout Court of Honor ceremony on May 18 at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints in Valley Center. The Eagle Scouts included in the Court of Honor were Kerigan McCaffree, Samuel McCuskey, Bannon Greer, and Mitchell Rush.

The recognition began with Troop Color Guard presenting the opening flag ceremony, followed by the Pledge of Allegiance, then the Scout Oath presented by Andrew Nebeker and Scout Law presented by Tyler Priest.

After Bill Hardy gave the invocation, Master of Ceremonies Dave Rush welcomed everyone to the ceremony. The keynote speaker was Tom Buck, Valley Center High School coach and teacher of the four recognized Eagle Scouts. Scout Master Dana Nickens presented the Eagle Scout Challenge followed by the Eagle Scout Charge presented by Scott Kimball. The ceremony continued with award presentations followed by gift presentations from parents and Troop 620 in which McCaffree, McCuskey, Greer, and Rush were recognized. Colors were then retired. The ceremony closed with Samuel McCuskey III giving the benediction. Larry Samuels from the San Diego area played the bagpipes.

One of the four recognized Eagle Scouts was Kerigan McCaffree, born on Super Bowl Sunday, January 28, 1996. His younger sister was also born on Super Bowl Sunday almost seven years later. Easy going and good-natured, Kerigan loves to help people and spends spare time doing service. He can be counted on helping his fellow scouts with their Eagle projects.

Kerigan enjoys baseball and played little league during his younger years. He likes being outdoors. Camping, swimming, and hiking are some of his favorite activities.

Larry Samuels plays bagpipes at the Eagle Scout ceremony.
In sixth grade, Kerigan was involved in the Agriculture program and continued through high school, then joined FFA. His Eagle project was for the program. He has volunteered at Ag Day the last few years to talk to elementary school kids about Agriculture.

Balancing a very active life between church, school, and scouting, he graduated from Seminary in May and high school in June. When Kerigan returns from his mission, he will be attending BYU-Idaho.

Samuel McCuskey IV was born January 3, 1996 in Poway. He is the older of two boys. He moved to Valley Center when he was two years old. When Sam was four, he began Tae Kwon Do and progressed through the ranks earning a junior black belt by age nine. He attended Lilac Elementary where he was involved in Cub Scouts. He remained active in Scouts earning the Arrow of Light before joining Boy Scouts.

Sam has always been involved in sports. He played recreational soccer then moved on to the Hurricanes. In fifth grade, he played lacrosse on Valley Center's inaugural middle school team. In high school, he ran cross-country for four years earning Most Important Runner three consecutive years then made it to the state meet. He wrestled, played lacrosse, and ran track earning five varsity letters.

Other accomplishments include induction in the National Honor Society, scholar athlete awards, and being in the top four percent of his class. He worked at Forest Lawn Scout Camp for three summers. He will be attending UC Davis in the fall.

Bannon Greer was born September 22, 1995 in Murrieta. He has always been active in sports. At five, he played baseball and soccer. He played club basketball for several years. Bannon played football as a freshman and sophomore and played Pop Warner for 10 years.

He won the turkey trot both years at the upper elementary school and ran cross-country in seventh and eighth grades. He ran club track in middle school, qualifying for Junior Nationals. Bannon set a new school record when he placed ninth in his division when he went to the state meet. He received an award for all-CIF San Diego section for cross-country. He has run varsity track all four years at high school setting records in the 4X400 and the 1600. He has two varsity letters in cross-country and four in track and field. Bannon has been invited to participate in the Down Under Sports Track and Field Competition in Brisbane, Australia in July.

He will be serving a Spanish-speaking mission in the Dominican Republic for two years beginning July 30. After completing his mission, he will be attending Utah State in Logan, Utah.

Mitchell Rush was born May 6, 1995. He is the third of four children. He graduated with honors from middle school and was awarded academic and athletic awards for his graduating class. He graduated in the top 10 percent of his class in high school. Mitchell lettered in water polo, basketball, and volleyball. He also completed four years of early morning seminary. He received a scholarship to UCSD. He is completing his sophomore year in June after which he will take a two-year hiatus from college to serve a mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.

Mitchell has been an anchor in his mother's life during her fight against cancer. He remains her strength during her prolonged fight.

Spiritual and cultural aspects of scouting appealed to the leaders of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints and in 1911, they looked into scouting as a possible activity for young men of the Church. Today the Church sponsors more Scouts than any other organization in the U.S.

Arch Monson, former National President of the Boy Scouts of America said the following about the program:

"The methods of Scouting provide a most effective means whereby boys can learn self-reliance, teamwork, duty to God and country, and respect for the beliefs and convictions of others all by subscribing to the Scout oath and law and supporting it. In this way they develop a code of ethics and a sense of values by which they pattern their lives."

According to One Hundred Scouts logistics, of any 100 boys who become Scouts, 30 will drop out in their first year. Twelve of the 100 will be brought into contact with a church. Six of the 100 will enter the clergy of his chosen faith. Each of the 100 will learn something from scouting. Almost all will develop hobbies that will add interest throughout their lives. Approximately one half will serve in the military and at least one will profit from their scout training to save another person's life.

Four of the 100 will reach Eagle rank. Seventeen of the 100 will later become Scout leaders and will give leadership to thousands of additional boys. Only one in four boys in America will become Scouts. Of the leaders of this nation in business, politics, and religion, three out of four were Scouts.

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