Boy Scout Troop 82, Lehighton proudly saw another of it's members reach the rank of Eagle Scout.
Joshua Edward Kern, son of Keith and Grace Kern of Lehighton was recognized at an Eagle Scout Court of Honor held March 9 at Zion United Church of Christ Church, Lehighton. He is the second Eagle Scout in the family as his brother, Nicolas became an Eagle Scout in 2009 and in 2007, his sister, Katie was a recipient of a Girl Scouts of America Gold Award.
His Eagle Scout project consisted of removing grass and replacing it with small gravel and rock border around gardens at the Lehigh Gap Nature Center in Lehigh Township.
Master of ceremonies at the Court of Honor was Don Evans. James Henderson conveyed the Court of Honor.
"This is Scouting's highest honor," said Evans. "This is a great moment, worthy of celebration."
Joshua's trail to Eagle Scout began in 2006 when he attained the Arrow of Light, moving through the ranks of Scout, Tenderfoot, Second Class, First Class, Star, Life and finally Eagle.
Kern earned 21 merit badges, spent a total of 33 nights camping, hiked 10 miles, and spend 67.5 hours performing community service.
During the Court of Awards, members of his Troop traversed Joshua's Trail from joining the Troop on March 16, 2006 to reaching his Eagle Rank on Dec. 18, 2012, with a candlelighting ceremony.
Ed Kroboth, leader said, "Joshua made a miraculous transformation during those years."
Devin Frantz was the Scouter. He asked, "What does it mean to be to be a leader?" He noted that Joshua had prepared for the honor by passing tests and completing many requirements. He noted than Joshua is an outdoorsman and is comfortable in nature. "He is a good citizen, has met fitness goals and is a good family member and is able to take care of himself and others," said Frantz.
Joshua was escorted by an honor guard of his friends to receive his Eagle Badge, which was presented by Scot Wingert, Scoutmaster. He said that Joshua is good company and that he was proud to be honoring Joshua.
Adam Reichard was the charger. He noted that it takes special abilities to become an Eagle Scout. He said that an Eagle Scout takes on responsibilities, to live with honor, to be loyal, courageous, serve others and have vision to look into the future.
Wingert asked all Eagle Scouts in attendance to repeat the Eagle Scout Pledge and rededicate themselves with the Eagle Scout Promise.
Then the honor guard escorted his parents forward. Wingert noted that his parents were a great source of guidance and support as Joshua was pinned the Eagle Scout Mother's Pin on his mother and presented the Father's Lapel Pin to his father. His mother pinned the Eagle Pin on his chest.
Joshua then presented an Eagle Scout Leaders plaque to Wingert and an Eagle Scout Mentor's Pin to Ed Kroboth.
As part of the community's recognition, Joshua was then presented a House of Representatives Citation by State Rep. Doyle Heffley.
"The things that you learned you will utilize the rest of your life," said Heffley. "The things that have happened today will stay with you the rest of your life. Such as you will always remember your mother pinning the award on your chest."
Also recognizing Joshua was Dan Kunkle of the Lehigh Gap Nature Center. Kunkle said that he enjoyed working with Joshua for the project. Kunkle said there are still quite a few projects available at the Lehigh Gap Nature Center.
Kunkle said that Joshua worked many hours gathering rocks and making trenches on an acre of gardens at the center. He noted that gathering the rocks was a lot of work. Kunkle said that the work Joshua did will contain the mulch and plants inside their borders.
He was also presented a Community Service Award by the Beltzville Lions and a Certificate of Achievement from Nick Hawkey of the Carbon Mountaineers Marine Corps League Detachment 996.
Mayor Donald Rehrig also proclaimed Saturday, March 9, as Eagle Scout Joshua Kern Day in Lehighton in honor of his Court of Award. He was also recognized by the Order of the Arrow. Duane Reichard also presented a Certificate of Merit from the United States Senate and read a letter from President Barak Obama and his wife, Michelle; and presented a Certificate of Recognition from the Sons of the American Revolution. He was also presented a Certificate of Achievement from Boy Scouts of America and a Lifetime membership in Boy Scouts of America.