Loch Raven: Scout's legacy of service leads to Eagle project at Camp Puh'Tok

Congratulations to 16-year-old Justin Kihn, who was awarded the rank of Eagle Scout at a ceremony at Hiss United Methodist Church on Nov. 9.

Kihn, who joined Cub Scout Pack 247 when he was in the second grade, now serves as junior assistant Scoutmaster for Troop 475, which meets at Hiss.

The Eagle award was presented by Scoutmaster Scott Zissimos. His parents, Sharon and John Kihn, brother Gavin and many friends, family members and Scouts were in attendance. A reception was held after the ceremony.

"Throughout his Scouting career, Justin has learned a lot about leadership and dedication to the community" said Sharon Kihn. Before bridging into Boy Scouts, he earned the Arrow of Light, the highest award in Cub Scouts.

During his five years with Troop 475, he also served as instructor, assistant patrol leader, patrol leader and earned the Order of Arrow, which is given to Scouts who are selected by their peers as best exemplifying scouting values.

For his Eagle project, Kihn organized a group of 36 volunteers in a renovation project at Camp Puh'Tok in Monkton. The team worked to expand and update an animal habitat for the American homestead program at the camp. To fund the project, he obtained donations and discounts from local businesses and donations from individuals connected to the camp.

Scouting and school keep him busy, but he still manages to find time for to play soccer and trombone for his school, Eastern Technical High School, where he is a member of the National Honor Society. Kihn also is involved in the youth group at Hiss UMC, and works part time at The Steakhouse in Perry Hall.

He accrued nearly 500 hours of service over the last five years participating in such activities as fundraising for the organization Imagine No Malaria; collecting food for local food pantries; renovating homes in West Virginia; and working with dementia patients at Oak Crest Village. He earned an award for having one of the highest number of volunteer hours as a student at Pine Grove Middle School, and was named a volunteer of the month by Oakcrest.

Recently, 13 "golden members" were honored at a worship service at Hiss United Methodist. Mary Lou and Walter Cayce, Hugh Conner, Sharon Daughaday, Elsie and John Dunnigan, Louis Eubank Jr., Judith Hora, George Klein, Alberta Linthicum, George Miller Jr., George Smith Jr. and James Willinghan have all been members of the church since at least 1961-62, and Donald and Fred Wells since 1938.

Pastor Tim Dowell recognized them for their faithfulness, and the group was acknowledged with a special cake at a fellowship time between the two worship services.

Get into the holiday spirit at Cromwell Valley Park's holiday open house on Saturday, Dec. 1, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. The event is open to all ages. The cost is a $2 donation.

The event includes seasonal crafts, cookie decorating, hot cider, music and a visit with Santa. Participants can also help decorate Sherwood house on the park grounds and purchase trees, wreaths, roping, seasonal arrangements and poinsettias, which will be for sale by TALMAR, a nonprofit which uses the therapeutic nature of horticulture to help people with disabilities. The park is located at 2002 Cromwell Bridge Road; for more details, call 410-887-2503.

Boy Scout Troop 792 invites boys in grades five through eight to attend its new member open house at Loch Raven United Methodist Church, 6622 Loch Raven Blvd., on Monday, Dec. 3, at 7:30 p.m. For more information, call 443-465-9606 or email csc4jobs@verizon.net.

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