By KEITH RYAN CARTWRIGHT
Rutherford County Schools
Braxton Johnson is currently a Life Scout with BSA Troop 248 in Alabama and working toward earning an Eagle Scout. He was recently granted permission by the Rutherford County School Board to clean up the Towns Cemetery located between Rocky Fork elementary and middle schools.
“We always have a great return when we work with the Eagle Scouts,” Director of Schools Bill Spurlock said. “We appreciate that hard effort.”
Trey Lee, assistant superintendent of engineering and construction, agreed.
“This is the third (project) I have had the privileged of seeing to fruition,” Lee said. “All three (projects) have been great.”
Johnson’s aunt, Kimberly Johnson, is a teacher at Rocky Fork Elementary.
Johnson organized a cleanup at the site to remove all the overgrowth, underbrush and dead material that was choking the cemetery. Assistant Scoutmaster Derek Johnson oversaw Braxton’s planning to make sure he was developing the project in accordance with the district’s desire for the location and to also make sure the younger Johnson was adhering to BSA guidelines.
Requirements include earning 21 merit badges — one of which is an Eagle Scout project — and demonstrating Scout Spirit and leadership. There are no requirements regarding how difficult or how long the project must take other than it should be challenging enough for the scout to require assistance.
“We do appreciate (Johnson) taking care of this situation,” Spurlock added. “As we mentioned before, we always get a lot out of this and we’re very thankful for that.”
Engineering has plans to keep the area from becoming overgrown and hopes to continue partnering with Eagle Scout candidates on future projects.