LITTLE SILVER, NJ - Red Bank Regional (RBR) seniors Michael Maier, Jr., and Zackary Forest, both of Red Bank, have grown up together in Boy Scouts. So it is fitting that the two recently earned scouting’s highest achievement of Eagle Scout in their Troop 67. Both young men are enrolled in RBR Academy of Pre-Engineering and are active in their school and community.
Michael has been a member of RBR’s football team and outdoor track and field program since he was a freshman, adding indoor track to his resume from sophomore year. He is a leader in the school’s Fellowship of Christian Athletes club, a member of the National Technology Honor Society and is s Student to Student peer leader. In his junior year, Michael represented RBR in the Boys State program. He has participated in his church as an alter server since middle school. He sought to extend his community service to his church, St. Anthony of Padua in Red Bank, for his Eagle Scout project.
St. Anthony’s maintains a food bank for those in need in their community. In the past, the pantry had been supplemented with vegetables and spices grown in their backyard garden, which had recently fallen into disrepair. Michael, with Father Tamayo’s blessing, agreed to regenerate the garden last spring. For several months he researched and planned out the cost and construction design of the garden. With the help of over 20 of his fellow scouts and their family members, he was able to execute the plan one day last May, putting in the garden. St. Anthony’s food bank enjoyed the bounty of tomatoes, pepper, zucchini, cucumber, cilantro and basil all last summer and fall.
Zackary Forest also sought to better his community for his Eagle Scout project, seeking a project directly with Red Bank’s Department of Public Works. The town was delighted to have Zackary refurbish a dozen picnic tables and benches located in two parks in Red Bank. The project was quite labor intensive involving scraping several layers of green paint, sanding, and painting over two weekends with the help of 12 fellow scouts.
Zackary has also enjoyed the natural beauty of his town as an active member of the Navesink River Rowing Youth Team. He has participated in many regattas for his club. In addition to boys’ scouts, Zack found a passion for Sea Scouts which has a “ship” troop in Red Bank. The sea scouts train in the maritime arts of working a ship and even take annual summer trips on their 60-foot Korean War era army transport navigating it up the northeastern coast to Block Island and Martha’s Vineyard.
Both boys are currently applying to college. Zack’s Sea Scouts’ experience is influencing his decision to attend a maritime college and Michael is interested in an engineering career after he serves time in the army. Therefore, he is applying to colleges with active ROTC programs. Both young men credit scouting with enriching their lives and informing their futures.
Zack states, “I learned about leadership in scouting, which is very important to me.”
Michael agrees adding, “I also learned to work as a team. You cannot do a lot by yourself and being a leader is being able to take control of a situation and relay on other people to get things done.”