Dedication and perseverance pay off for East Lawrence Senior

Zack pictured at the site for his community project, at Victory Baptist Church just outside Moulton. With this project completed,  Zack’s requirements for his Eagle Scout merit badge were fulfilled.

Zack Randolph came to the United States as a three-year- old, adopted by Greg and Pam Randolph of Trinity. He was born in the Ukraine, but he quickly settled into his family and his church and his country. And what could be more American than being a Boy Scout?

Although he started elementary school in East Lawrence, at the age of eight, when Zack transferred to St. Ann’s Catholic School, in Decatur, he joined the St. Ann’s Boy Scout Troup #91. He attended his first summer camp at Camp Sequoia in Tennessee with his troop of four other boys and his Scout Master, Kevin Moore. 

He says that Moore was a strict leader, but he learned a lot from him. The boys also went on a memorable trip to Boxwell, TN, where the young Scouts would become skilled at sailing. It was one of the best trips he can remember and Zack continues to enjoy the sport. 

Later, Zack returned to school at East Lawrence, where he will graduate next spring. 

Through the years he studied hard and earned the various merit badges required by the Scouts, but they were all easy for him to accomplish because he is energetic and loves the outdoors. 

Along the way he was required to learn various skills and says that he has put them into practice daily over the course of his life. 

In the first level of scouting, called Tenderfoot, the troops learned about fire safety, the outdoor code, attained a fire license and a license to us a ‘Tote and Chip” the official Boy Scout knife. 

Another trip he will always remember was to The National Scouting Museum in Irving, Texas, 53,000 square feet of floor space exhibiting a wide variety of artifacts relating to the history of the Boy Scouts. It also contained displays on activities of the Boy Scouts. Exhibits included paintings by Norman Rockwell and Joseph Csatari, High Adventure, National Scout Jamboree, Order of the Arrow, Scoutcraft through the years, Scout values, Eagle Scouts, and a historical collection tracing uniforms, themes, and documents from the beginning of the Scouting movement in America. Among the museum’s artifacts are the Eagle Scout medal of Arthur Rose Eldred, the first Eagle Scout. A focal point of the complex was a virtual-reality screen at the foot of the structure that allowed visitors to simulate bike-racing through the mountain or kayaking down its waters. 

The young Scouts learned to tie different knots and the proper way of handing over an opened knife. Both of these skills have come in useful to him in his daily life. 

The 2nd class requirements include knowing and respecting the Scout laws and oath, which the boys learn to recite as nine year olds. 

The 3rd requirement included overnight camping, learning to cook and clean, put up a tent, and other duties required in a camp. 

The 4th requirement of being a Boy Scout is to be decent, kind, clean cut, and to include saying prayers into their daily routine. “Boy Scouts must always be ready,” Zack stressed. “This middle requirement means you are halfway through your requirements toward becoming an official Eagle Scout.”

The 4th requirement also requires that each Scout have a duty or a job, such as being patrol leader. 

“A patrol leader is a little like being the president of a club,” Zack explained. 

In the 5th and final stage of the group, called Life, Zack’s job was Sr. Patrol Leader, for which he was judged and voted in.

Part of this section requires that scouts keep a 68-page budget. It was, according to Zack, one of the hardest parts of the entire quest to become an Eagle Scout. That includes hiking up a mountain with a heavy backpack, and running each morning to stay fit. 

His day starts at 5:00 a.m. when he hits the road near his home. He runs in all kinds of weather, except thunderstorms that produce lightning. Wearing his trademark sunglasses and his earbuds, Zack runs for at least an hour each morning, then again with the track and cross-country team from East Lawrence in the afternoons. The cross-country running with the team also counts toward his Eagle Scout merit badge. 

He also eats well to promote his health. A normal day’s meals and snacks might include a pop tart, almond milk, a protein bar and a protein drink. He likes to include a lot of protein in his diet, so he makes sure to include mushrooms, peas, beans, peanut butter and jelly, plenty of vegetables and potatoes, and fruit for carbs. When camping he took along his Instapot, a campers best friend! “The pack weighed about 45 pounds,” he laughed. The group hiked for two days in the Georgia Mountains. He stayed hydrated by drinking plenty of Gatorade and water. 

One of the biggest projects that he was required to finish was a community project. For this, Zack, who had noticed that the new Victory Baptist Church he attends didn’t have a flag pole, decided to build them one. He used his math and architectural skills to build a raised flower bed with the flag pole holding center stage. 

On May 9, 2019, a nervous Zack Randolph and some of his fellow Scouts waited their turns to be questioned at an Eagle Scout Review Board panel. At 18, you are required to earn your Eagle Scout badge, it is mandatory that you be reviewed and either earn your merit badge or lose the opportunity forever. 

It was what he had strived for since the age of eight. In this day and age when kids stay glued to video games, text while driving, make bad grades and give their parents a lot of grief in one way or another, Zack Randolph never faltered, never lost his determination, never thought about quitting. He set his goal early and stayed on the path to see it through. 

The Review Board unanimously voted and Zack proudly received what he had worked so hard to achieve, he was officially an Eagle Scout. As such, his name will be included in a marble wall to honor Scouts who have completed the requirements. 

Currently Zack attends classes in drafting at the Lawrence County Technical School. He hopes to start college this fall with an architectural scholarship at Maryland College in Nashville. 

His other goal is to help other boys earn the honor and privilege of becoming an Eagle Scout. 

In the meanwhile, he works part-time for his dad at Greg’s Ambulance. His hobbies are spending time with his friends from church and watching baseball on television. 

Sidebar….

Boy Scout Oath or Promise

On my honor, I will do my best 

To do my duty to God and my country and to obey the Scout Law; 

To help other people at all times; 

Note that the Boy Scout Oath has traditionally been considered to have three promises. Those three promises are delineated by the semicolons in the Oath, which divide it into three clauses. The three promises of the Scout Oath are, therefore:

Duty to God and country,

Duty to other people, and

Duty to self

DUTY TO GOD AND COUNTRY: Your family and religious leaders teach you to know and serve God. By following these teachings, you do your duty to God. 

Men and women of the past worked to make America great, and many gave their lives for their country. By being a good family member and a good citizen, by working for your country’s good and obeying its laws, you do your duty to your country. Obeying the Scout Law means living by its 12 points.

DUTY TO OTHER PEOPLE: Many people need help. A cheery smile and a helping hand make life easier for others. By doing a ‘Good Turn’ daily and helping when you’re needed, you prove yourself a Scout and do your part to make this a better world.

DUTY TO SELF: Keeping yourself physically strong means taking care of your body. Eat the right foods and build your strength. Staying mentally awake means learn all you can, be curious, and ask questions. Being morally straight means to live your life with honesty, to be clean in your speech and actions, and to be a person of strong character.

To keep myself physically strong, mentally awake and morally straight.

Boy Scout Law

A Scout is:

•Trustworthy, 

•Loyal, 

•Helpful, 

•Friendly, 

•Courteous, 

•Kind, 

•Obedient, 

•Cheerful, 

•Thrifty, 

•Brave, 

•Clean, 

•and Reverent.

Boy Scout Motto

Be Prepared! 

Boy Scout Slogan

Do a Good Turn Daily! 

The Outdoor Code

As an American, I will do my best to -

•Be clean in my outdoor manners

•Be careful with fire

•Be considerate in the outdoors, and

•Be conservation minded.

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