Troop 228 in Independence recently celebrated the advancement of two Boy Scouts to the rank of Eagle.
John Calen “JC” Bicknell
JC is the son of Robert and Nicole Bicknell. He began his Scouting career with Cub Scout Pack 228, where he earned the Arrow of Light in November 2011. He joined Troop 228 in December 2011.
JC earned 29 merit badges toward his Eagle rank. He served Troop 228 as den chief, assistant patrol leader, senior patrol leader and junior assistant scoutmaster. JC completed National Youth Leader Training in 2015 and earned the World Conservation Award in 2018.
He attended camp at the H. Roe Bartle Scout Reservation for seven summers. He is Warrior Screeching War Eagle in the Tribe of Mic-O-Say and a Brotherhood Member in the Order of the Arrow. He completed a trek at the Philmont Scout Ranch in 2016.
JC’s Eagle Scout project involved collecting and preparing donations for military care packages.
He is a senior at Truman High School in Independence, where he is currently the company commander in the Junior Reserve Officers Training Corps. He has enlisted in the United States Marine Corps and is expected to report for basic training shortly after graduation next May. His life’s goal is to become a Marine Corps officer. Upon retirement from the military, he aspires to become a chemist or seek political office.
JC attends St. John Catholic Church, where he has served as an acolyte. His hobbies include Raiders, physical training, video games, and puzzles.
Gabriel Braun Wilson Ritchheart
Gabe is the son of Danny and Anna Marie Wilson.
He began his Scouting career with Cub Scout Pack 228, where he earned the Arrow of Light in November 2011. He joined Troop 228 in December 2011 and has been involved with Avon Troop 31.
Gabe earned 27 merit badges toward his Eagle rank. He served Troop 228 as librarian, troop guide and chaplain’s aide, and he completed National Youth Leader Training in northern Minnesota.
He has attended camp at Camp Geiger in St. Joseph, Missouri for eight years and served one year on the camp staff. He is Runner Least Bison Finder in the Tribe of Mic-O-Say in the Pony Express Council.
Gabe’s Eagle Scout project took place at Litchfield Church of the Nazarene in Litchfield, Minnesota. He led a crew that landscaped the area around the building to prevent entry of water and further ruin of the foundation, walls and flooring. At the church’s request, they removed a memorial that had overgrown over time.
He is a senior at Minnesota’s Connections Academy and plays trombone for the St. Cloud Home School Band. After graduation next May, Gabe plans to undertake online coursework through Metropolitan Community College. He will then transfer to Mid-America Nazarene University to study history and education with a minor in culinary arts. He aspires to work at a museum or teach at the high school or college level. In his spare time, he would like to work at a restaurant or run a catering business. He currently works part time at Casey’s General Store.
Gabe attends Litchfield Church of the Nazarene, where he is active in the youth group and helps in the children’s department. His hobbies include cooking and video games and he enjoys spending time with family. He is a recommended second-degree black belt in tae kwon do.