ATLANTIC HIGHLANDS, NJ - What do several local business owners, a lawyer, a pharmaceutical executive, a realtor, and a few retired grumpy old men all have in common? Aside from knowing how to tie a square knot plus half a dozen “Granny Knots” these old scouts collectively go the extra mile as Troop 22 scout leaders.

Several of them are good at building things using rope and logs. A prime example might be a rope bridge to span a river or ravine. A bridge constructed so well that even Indiana Jones would be impressed. A few of these older scouts do know how to cook. There is nothing better than an old fashioned home cooked meal prepared in a cast iron Dutch oven.  A tasty delicacy baked over a bed of hot coals (just don’t forget the Bisquick instant muffin mix). Teaching outdoor camping skills, demonstrating leadership and practicing the responsibilities of citizenship are the elements that help create and mold a great scout troop. Through good times and bad, Troop 22 would not be here today if it were not for scout leaders who believed in the core values of the B.S.A. scouting program. Below are Troop 22 scout leaders who went the extra mile.

Presently Troop 22 has twelve Assistant Scout Masters. The year they started as scout leaders is shown in parenthesis: Dave Cofield (1988), Ken Falls (2009), Beat Flepp (2010), Shawn Fitzgerald (2007), Frank Greco (2007), Cap Kaasmann (1992), Ed Kelley (2006), Eric Layton (2008), Tim Mueller (2007), Jim Passaro (2007), Jeff Poltrictzky (2007), and Carl Ward (2007).

Leading the troop for over TWENTY YEARS is Scoutmaster Allen Resch of Belford, New Jersey. Of the 71 scouts who have reached the rank of Eagle Scout in Troop 22, 39 were under the leadership of Mr. Resch. The troop is highly active in outdoor tent camping, mid-Atlantic region field trips and numerous community service projects. Troop 22 will officially celebrate its 100th anniversary in December. This important milestone date serves as a testimonial to the enduring strength of the Troop 22 scouting program. The success of Troop 22 is a positive reflection on the commitment and dedication of Scoutmaster Allen Resch.

Backing up the scout master’s uniformed leadership team are troop committee members: Michael Arentoft, Audrey Ducsai, Karen Jenkins, Dan Kilduff, Fiona Layton, Dan Lingelbach, Jeanne Posten, Gerri Resch, Pam Semmel, Gerald Thomas, Barbara Valentin, Gigi Zeller and Bill Zengel. All work behind the scenes in support roles, fundraising, planning troop functions, field trips, scout ceremonies and social events.

Atlantic Highlands and surrounding communities should take great pride in the accomplishments and vitality of youth programs sponsored by a host of organizations- both public and private. While not all boys choose to explore the scouting trail for what it has to offer, the legacy of this seasoned international youth program has endured for over a century. There are those who might contend that a scout doesn’t need to be Trustworthy, Loyal, Helpful, Friendly, Courteous, Kind, Obedient, Cheerful, Thrifty, Brave, Clean and Reverent. But a true scout possesses these traits and more.  To all scout leaders who have developed and led young men aspiring to be tomorrow’s positive role models, contributing citizens and leaders, old scouts, such as myself, salute them.

For more info on Cub Scout and Boy Scout programs, e-mail: bsatroop22@groups.facebook.com