Eagle Scout prospect seeks camping donations


Eagle Scout prospect seeks camping donations

By KEVIN WARNER

Brentwood High School junior Daniel Brawner and his father, Eddie, first got into Boy Scouts of America after taking home a flyer from his first-grade class.

Brentwood High School junior Daniel Brawner and his father, Eddie, first got into Boy Scouts of America after taking home a flyer from his first-grade class.

A decade later, Eddie Brawner is Daniel’s Scout Master and Daniel has a flyer of his own as he tries to obtain donated new or gently used camping and outdoor gear for his Eagle Scout Service Project as part of his journey to become an Eagle Scout.

The donations will benefit The Tennessee Wildlife Federation’s Great Outdoors University (GOU), which gives underprivileged youth from low- income areas the ability to experience nature through camping and other outdoor activities.

Daniel belongs to Boy Scout Troop 86, which is a ‘high adventure troop’ and has taken trips to Florida, New Mexico, Canada and Alaska, among others.

“I’ve been really blessed with having the gear that us really fortunate kids in Brentwood have,” he said. “. . . That’s one reason I’ve chosen Great Outdoors University to work with because I’m more blessed than other kids.”

Some of the camping equipment that Daniel and GOU need donated includes camping gear, tents, camp stoves, tarps, coolers and backpacking gear. Donations should be dropped in the BSA Troop 86 Drop Box at East Brentwood Presbyterian Church, located at 9000 Concord Road. Call or text Brawner at 615-948-8900 to have donations moved inside.

Daniel also decided to appeal to other local troops and his church, Spring Hill First Baptist, to help with the donation drive.

After five months of planning, the project started last week and Daniel already has received 20 pairs of hiking boots, 10 pairs of water shoes, eight coolers, eight backpacks and other camping equipment as of Thursday. Donations will be accepted through Oct.30.

GOU Nashville Project Manager Sonya Wood Mahler sees Daniel’s project as a major boon to their stores of equipment.

“This is going to give us more flexibility, it’s going to let people know that we’re serious,” she said. “If we can show that we are serious about our camping trips, that we’re serious about our fishing trips, we have good quality gear that’s functional, then we will really be the best in the business.”

Mahler said she still needs 22 sleeping bags and five tents for GOU’s three upcoming outings on Oct. 11 and that kids on trips often have to wear old boots that ‘sort of’ fit them. Her dream is to provide a flashlight, sleeping bag, and boots to every child to keep.

GOU, begun in 2005, runs almost weekly camping, fishing, elk-viewing trips around the country from March through November and last year around 1,000 kids participated in the program. GOU also partners with BSA’s Scout Reach Program, which brings scouting to youth in low income areas.

Apart from the GOU project, Daniel will have earned 21 merit badges in various disciplines and he will go in front of a review board in November. He hopes to receive his rank of Eagle Scout from his scout master father, Eddie, in December. Eddie Brawner earned the rank in 1977 and Eddie plans to retire as a Scout Master after Daniel’s ceremony.

Daniel, the prospective Eagle Scout, says he will take a lot of the things he’s learned with him as he moves through life.

“I’ve learned about living the [Scout] oaths and laws in my everyday life, and following the points that are in those oaths and laws.”

The Scout Law says a scout is helpful, kind, courteous and thrifty, among other things, but Eddie Brawner sees another important Scout message in practice in his son’s work project as well.

“The scout slogan is ‘do a good turn daily’ and this is a perfect example of doing a good turn.”

Kevin Warner writes feature stories for Home Page Media Group. Contact him with story ideas at kev.warner711@gmail.com

About The Author

Kelly Gilfillan is the owner-publisher of Home Page Media Group which has been publishing hyperlocal news since 2009.

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