Worth Retelling

Edited by Jon C. Halter
Illustration by Bill Basso

A Chance to say 'Thank You'

As chairman of Greater Western Reserve Council’s Scouting EXPO3, celebrating Ohio’s Bicentennial, I had the opportunity to speak at the closing ceremony.

Near the end, I asked all veterans and active military personnel to join me onstage. More than 50 of our finest came forward, and the audience of Scouts and Scouters paid tribute with the Scout salute. As I looked at individuals onstage, I caught the glint of tears on a few faces. Those men and women were truly moved by the recognition, and it was an honor to share the stage with them.

At the leaders’ meeting afterward, a few veterans said they wanted to thank the Scouts for the tribute. One even said that it was the first time he had been recognized in that way since he stepped off a bus returning from duty in Vietnam.

Their gratitude is what I call a “Scouting paycheck.”

Kent M. Marks
Assistant Scoutmaster, Troop 56
Painesville, Ohio

Easy as 1-2-3

I always felt a sense of pride and importance when offering the Boy Scout salute, and in the years before World War II I led my Wolf patrol in its use at every opportunity.

However, I never anticipated how that salute would “save the day” for a young soldier…me.

I received my first issue of GI clothes at the induction center and was walking toward the barracks with my naive mind full of anticipation of the air war in the skies over Germany.

Belatedly, I saw an officer coming toward me. The silver on his shoulders indicated he was a captain, and I was sure I should salute him.

Because I hadn’t yet received instruction in proper military saluting technique, I was near panic. I stood at attention and gave the captain my very best Boy Scout salute.

As he passed by, the captain smiled and returned my nervous gesture with what was the only Boy Scout salute by an Army Air Corps officer I would ever see.

Eugene M. Nuss
Lt. Col., USAF (Ret.)
Sarasota, Fla.


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