A knowledgeable trail
AMY MILLER/TIMES NEWS Derek Marouchoc of Boy Scout Troop 744 in Nesquehoning, kneels behind one of the signs he made along the nature trail at Air Products in Hometown. Marouchoc completed his Eagle Scout project by identifying trees and plants along the trail and building 38 identification posts, which now line the path.
On the grounds of Air Products Plant in Hometown, a nature trail exists, lush with flora and fauna of the area.
But residents visiting the trail had no way of knowing what the names of the plants and trees that lined the winding path were as they walked.
That has all changed now, thanks to the efforts of Derek Marouchoc, a Panther Valley High School senior and member of Boy Scout Troop 744 in Nesquehoning, who is working toward becoming an Eagle Scout.
Over a period of six months, Marouchoc, with the help of friends and family, identified, cataloged and built 38 markers that now provide hikers with the names of the species of plants along the trail.
He noted that the project took him a total of 113 hours to complete.
"I first had to identify the trees and plants and then made posts for them," Marouchoc said.
He thanked his friends and family who helped along the way; as well as Nesquehoning Mayor Tony Walck and Air Products for recommending the project and for donating the supplies.
Marouchoc found the project after speaking with Walck, who also works at Air Products. Walck helped him, as well as his twin brother David, find their Eagle Scout projects.
On a recent trip to the wildlife sanctuary, members of Air Products traveled the trail to see Marouchoc's work.
Karl H. Nolte, plant manager, thanked Marouchoc for doing such a fine job, adding, "It's a great project. It's an educational tool for people who want to come to the sanctuary and learn."
He also thanked Walck for making the connection between Air Products and Marouchoc.
Walck noted that Derek and David both did fantastic jobs on their Eagle Scout projects.
Of Derek's project, he said, "He did a great job. It was a good project and the people will enjoy it."
Derek's father, Gerry, who is an assistant Scoutmaster at Troop 744, added that he was proud of both his boys.
"They both accomplished such high goals. It shows a lot of dedication to Scouting," he said.
Derek and David are the sons of Gerry and Terry Marouchoc of Nesquehoning.
The Wildlife Sanctuary, which is situated across the street from Air Products on Marian Avenue in Hometown, is open from dawn until dusk.