Eagle Scout plants Trees for Tribs
Since the first Eagle Scout was awarded 100 years ago, just two million Boy Scouts have achieved the prestigious top rank. Our John Wagner spent time with one scout whose plan to repair a shoreline is sure to line up the award.
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ORANGE COUNTY, N.Y. -- "It was completely destroyed, there was trees down everywhere," said Chaz Cella.
Tropical Storms Irene and Lee overflowed the Woodna Creek bank, adding three feet of water to Chaz Cella's favorite - Weir's Ice Cream stand. To help out, he brought together more than 80 scouts, friends, and 200 plus trees to restore the creek bank.
"It means like a new beginning of life especially for these trees, and a new way for people to survive during hurricanes and floods that occur here," said Chaz Cella, a Life Scout from Washingtonville's Troop 16.
Chaz joined forces with the DEC's five year old "Trees for Tribs" program, that has planted more than 22,000 trees and shrubs along 60,000 feet of streams connected to the Hudson River.
"We have drinking water coming out of it, we want our fish to be healthy and by planting near those streams we're helping to clean up those streams, we're helping to keep them clean for the future," explained Beth Roessler, the stream buffer coordinator for DEC's Hudson River Estuary Program.
"We hope that the new growth will help contain the river in its banks and absorb any additional water from rainfall," said Elizabeth Weir, part of the family that has owned Weir's popular ice cream stand since 1956.
Only about one in twenty Boy Scouts will earn the rank of Eagle Scout this year. The large majority do it as a senior in high school but Chaz is a zealous sophomore.
"I went to summer camp twice to get double the merit badges to work on, so I could get there faster," said Chaz.
"He's not just a boy to sit on his hands and wait for summer, he does them all year round," said Chaz's father, Craig Gimenez. "He just finished horsemanship, electricity."
Chaz holds 55 merit badges. That's 34 more than he needed.
"I can just give them the job or give them the details and they can just run with it," described Gimenez on the respect earned by an Eagle Scout. "They don't have to rely on somebody else."
Chaz could be the 11th member of Troop 16 to earn the rank of eagle. A badge that would follow him for life.
"You can be trusted," said 1985 Eagle Scout Chris Curry, Troop 16's committee chairman. "When you get into the workplace, if you're hired for a job, for a project to manage something, they expect more of you."