Ponte Vedra resident Thomas Houston celebrated his Court of Honor Jan. 18, when the Nease High School student achieved the rank of Eagle Scout.
As part of the requirements to achieve the Eagle Scout rank, Houston planned and executed a community service project: the construction of a rear patio at the Nocatee fire station for use by station personnel to relax, barbecue and eat meals. Patio furniture was also donated so the station’s first responders can relax in between emergency response calls.
“After months of planning, fundraising, budgeting, and collecting supplies we finally went to work,” Houston said. “We spent four weekends prepping the area, hauling dirt, laying and compacting pavers, and planting shrubs. It took a team effort to complete the project in the heat of the summer, but the scouts got it done.”
Scouts also must hold leadership positions in order to be eligible for Eagle Scout, Houston noted. “One of my favorites was senior patrol leader, in which I was charged to lead and guide over 100 active scouts,” Houston said. “It was a learning experience, and yes, trying to keep them all in line is just as hard as you could imagine.”
The son of Dr. Gil Houston and Dr. Karen Wolf, Houston is a member of Ponte Vedra Beach Troop 277. He is also a cadet in Nease’s nationally recognized NJROTC program and a member of the Nease marching band. To him, he said, achieving the rank of Eagle Scout demonstrates that a scout has developed the leadership, skills and maturity needed to make the world a better place.
“I would like to inspire young boys to join scouting,” he said, “and those already participating to stay the course and reach for Eagle.”