Zachariah Prather, Taylor Hoinacki and Blake Hermes receive Eagle Scout medallions

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[February 06, 2017]   LINCOLN - Zachariah Prather - Meador returned to the stage to present Zachariah Prather. He said that when he was asked by Zach to present him in the Court of Honor, he was very proud to be able to do so.

Meador recited the scripture “Love is patient, Love is kind….” He commented that this was not about the love between boyfriend and girlfriend, but rather it was about the love of brother, a kind of love that is strong within the scout community.

Prather received his Arrow of Light in 2010. He’s walked the Lincoln Trail three times. He has camped in several scout camps across the country including Philmont. Meader said he was blessed to go with Prather, as well as Burton, at Philmont and he regarded them to be among the best men he has ever camped with, always looking out for others and showing concern for every person in the group.

Prather passed his Eagle Board of Review in July of 2016. His project was to organize and implement a drug take back program, collecting un-used prescription drugs for proper disposal.

Prather thanked many of the usual people, but added a thank-you to his cousin who introduced him to scouting.

Prather drew a laugh from the audience when he talked about the scout value of being thrifty. He said he had not yet learned that lesson when he went on his first trip to Ingersoll. Consequently, he said he spent a weeks’ worth of food money in the first few days, buying chocolate tacos.

He pinned his parents, noting that they had been supportive, and had also nudged him to keep working as he approached the Eagle Scout ranking, it had been their push to keep working that had driven him to complete his project.

Prather said he had gotten to know several young men in scouts, and had a love for all of them.

He recounted a childish venture while at Philmont. He said that the boys had decided to play hide and seek. Instead of running and hiding, Prather said he put on his jacket and sunglasses and went and sat with the troop leaders around the campfire. He fooled all the boys and they didn’t find him until one of the leaders finally could not help from laughing and gave Prather away.

Prather presented his mentor pin to Tim McCraith saying that when he needed a little guidance, and McCraith was always there to give it.

Taylor Hoinacki

Tim McCraith was called on to present the Eagle Scout award to Taylor Hoinacki.

Hoinacki advanced from Cub Scout to Boy Scout in 2011. He had attended numerous scout adventures, and had earned many merit badges.

McCraith noted that last year Hoinacki was a life guard at the Lincoln Park District, and utilized the training he had received in scouts to save a young child in the pool.

Hoinacki also enjoys cooking and likes to cook for his family.

Hoinacki completed his Eagle Scout project this past year. He worked to restore a paint ball course at Little Galilee Christian Camp.

When he took the stage, Hoinacki acknowledged the many family members who were present including his parents, siblings, aunt and uncle and cousins.

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In talking about his Eagle project, he thanked his team, but also acknowledged that his dad had been a big help in the project also.

He spoke to all the scouts in the room, encouraging them to strive for the Eagle Scout. He said that it was a lot of work, but well worth it.

Hoinacki also presented his mentor pin to his father.

Blake Hermes

Blake Hermes was the last person to receive his award. His presenter was Ed Robison. Robison said there are always scouts who are there for whatever is needed, to help clean up or do the work, or to lend leadership and assistance to the younger scouts, while others go play. Robison said Hermes was one of those scouts, always on hand when needed.

Hermes has made the Lincoln Pilgrimage four times, has worked as a counselor at Ingersoll Scout Camp two years, has attended many camps including Philmont in New Mexico.

Robison recounted a story about Hermes mother, saying that she is a cautious lady who worries sometimes that things are too dangerous for the kids to do. He said that for the most part the mom takes a lot of ribbing for this. Then he recalled one trip where Hermes talked to his mother and reported he had poison ivy. Mom called Robison and thought she should go get her son. Robison said he discouraged this saying it would embarrass Blake, and to just let it be. Then, when he saw the boy soon after and saw how bad he was “I was like, man Sandra, you should have come and got him.” The moral to the story, though somewhat laughable, was sometimes mom is right.

Robison continued on for a while, regaling funny stories of the trip to Philmont.

Robison said that Hermes was a great scout and a great leader within the troop.

When Hermes took the podium, he talked about that word ‘thrifty,' saying that while a scout is expected to be thrifty, his parents are not. He thanked his parents for all their financial sacrifices as well as time spent, so that he could be a part of the scouting experience.

After pinning his parents, Hermes expressed gratitude to all of the scout leaders and assistant leaders for their continued help and dedication to the scouts.

Hermes Eagle Scout project was to replace the wooden drainage blocks at Zion Lutheran School with new gravel and concrete blocks to disperse the flow from the downspouts and prevent soil erosion.

Hermes chose Ed Robison as his mentor, and it was somewhat of an emotional moment for the leader, who had earlier expressed great respect and affection for the young man.

[Nila Smith]

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