Scout's Honor: Kwajalein Boy Scout Sean Hepler Earns Eagle Scout Status
Kwajalein Boy Scout Sean Hepler was promoted to Eagle Scout during a ceremony to commemorate his achievement May 9, 2022, at the Community Activities Center on U.S. Army Garrison-Kwajalein Atoll. (U.S. Army photo by Jessica Dambruch) (Photo Credit: Jessica Dambruch) VIEW ORIGINAL

Kwajalein Boy Scout Sean Hepler attained the rank of Eagle Scout during a Court of Honor ceremony at the Corlett Recreation Center on May 9, 2022, on U.S. Army Garrison-Kwajalein Atoll.

Community members, mentors and Scouts from Kwajalein Troop 314 joined the Hepler family to commemorate the presentation.

A Scout must complete all tasks and skills requirements for Eagle Scout candidacy before turning 18 years old. Following rigorous final reviews, he is eligible to earn the top Scouting honor.

Senior Patrol Leader Myles Sylvester reviewed the achievements and practical qualifying skills Hepler had mastered over the years.

A Life Scout who had met all badge requirements, Hepler had demonstrated leadership, spirit and actively served his troop and patrol, Sylvester said. He had trained in an array of first aid and outdoor survival skills. He passed numerous final reviews and teleconference interviews with members of the Boy Scouts’ Chamorro District Council in Guam. With guidance from mentors, Hepler had additionally coordinated all aspects of a major capstone community service project and organized labor and supplies to build outdoor furniture for a communal island space.

Perhaps most importantly, Hepler had remained steadfast in upholding the tenants of the Scout Law and serving as a mentor for younger troop members.

“A Scout is trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean and reverent,” Sylvester said. “He promises, on his honor, to do his duty.”

Becoming an Eagle Scout is a milestone that a young man carries into adulthood, said Scoutmaster Anthony Strong. The sacrifice, leadership and determination of Eagle Scouts is recognized and respected around the world.

“I have even had people ask me about my Eagle Scout status during job interviews,” Strong said. “The achievement speaks to them. It is difficult, and it takes years of work to attain.”

The eagle is symbolic of the highest levels of Scouting mastery.

“Though an eagle is found throughout the world, he is never found in abundance; he is always rare, and he is always a superb specimen,” Strong said. “In Scouting, the eagle stands for strength of character. … The eagle is a symbol of what a young man has done well and what the young man will do, and will be, when he grows to manhood. The eagle is a leader. The eagle is respected, both by his peers and by his adult elders.”

Fellow Eagle Scout David Sholar led Hepler in reciting the Eagle Scout Charge before knotting Hepler’s new tricolor neckerchief. Hepler’s parents, Amy LaCost and Doug Hepler came forward to present his Eagle Scout badge. In turn, Sean gave them parent pins—a special award for their years of support to honor them as Scout parents. Hepler also surprised Jim Johnson, a valuable member of his Eagle Project team, with a token of gratitude for his enduring support and guidance.

Capt. Ron Sylvester echoed Strong’s remarks with a reading of the Eagle Challenge—a creed to guide Eagle Scouts.

“You are a marked man,” Sylvester said. “As an Eagle Scout, you are expected to exemplify in your daily life the high principles and values expressed in the Scout Oath and the Scout Law. … Be a leader but lead only toward the best. Live and serve so that those who know you will be inspired to the highest ideals of life.”

Strong said he knows that Hepler’s achievement will serve as an example to the younger troop members.

“To the rest of you, stay with it,” Strong said. “Stay the course.”