On Thursday December 8, the Burney Lions Club held a special ceremony to honor Boy Scout Troop 38 for their service to the community. The scout troop was presented with a letter from President Barack Obama, Certificates of Congressional recognition signed by Representative Doug LaMalfa, and a Certificate of Recognition and honorary flag from the Killed in Action Honor Flag Organization.
The award ceremony was largely the fruit of the efforts of a veteran named Ray Pittam and had an interesting genesis. Mr. Pittam brought his 1901 Oldsmobile to Burney to ride in the Burney Basin Days Parade last summer representing American Fallen Warriors and KIA. As he was proceeding down Main Street, his auto broke down. Spontaneously members of Boy Scout Troop 38 came forward and pushed his car through the entire parade.
His car carried the American Flag and a flag honoring those who had made the supreme sacrifice of giving their lives in service to our country. Pittam, moved by the efforts of the Scouts, felt that it was not only a community service, but a symbolic act of great patriotism. He told them at the time that he wanted to help arrange some sort of public recognition for their service.
Later, in Redding, one of his neigbors, a Lion, referred him to Mike Ferrrier, a member of the Enterprise Lions who is also an Eagle Scout. He told Mr. Ferrier that he wanted to get some awards to honor the Scout Troop 38 in Burney. Ferrier encouraged him to do so.
Pittam then contacted the White House, Congressman LaMalfa, and KIA. He procured awards from all of them. After doing so, he came to the Burney Lions Club in October to propose the idea of a community awards ceremony. After that, the Lions Club met with several community organizations including veterans and the Chamber of Commerce to discuss the idea and the result was Thursday night’s ceremony at the Lion’s meeting.
Lion Mike Barnes, Second Vice President, presided over the meeting and introduced Lion Walt Libal as one of the Master of Ceremonies for the evening. Lion Walt is the Chartered Organization Representative for the Boy Scouts for the Burney Lions Club. Walt then proceeded to introduce his fellow Master of Ceremonies, Mike Ferrier.
Mike Ferrier is the Global Leadership Team Coordinator for District 4-C1. He recently made a trip to Alaska to talk with Lions Clubs about leadership. He is also the Charter Representative for the Boy Scouts for the Enterprise Lions.
Ferrier said that as a child, his father had started a Cub Scouts den in Palo Cedro so his son could participate. When he came of age to become a Boy Scout, his father started a Boy Scout troop. Later, they moved to Redding where he joined a troop there and eventually became and Eagle Scout. He has remained active in Scouting throughout his adult life.
“The reason I became a Lion,” Ferrier said, “is because it is the closest thing that I know to being an adult Boy Scout.”
He talked of the importance of doing good deeds and praised the Scouts for their precept “Do a good turn daily.” He stressed that doing a good deed can be a simple act of kindness such as opening a door for someone or as complex as organizing a major charity undertaking, but “no good deed goes unnoticed.”
After his remarks, Ferrier introduced Ray Pittam who spoke about experiences which led him to try to lead a life of service to the community. He shared how he had been helped during the parade by Troop 38 and presented a flag from KIA to Troop 38 and the Burney Lions Hall.
Then the awards were presented. Ray Pittam and Troop 38 were presented with certificates from the KIA Honor Flag Organization.
Special Congressional recognitions were presented to Eagle Scout Travis Mayer, Scout James Chapman, and Scoutmaster George Chapman on behalf of Troop 38.
Finally, a letter was read from President Barack Obama commending the work of the Boy Scouts.
No good deed goes unnoticed.