Letter: The story behind the photograph
Thank you for the picture titled "New Playground" on page 10A of the Aug. 22 edition of this newspaper. However, the picture only documents the culmination of Zachary Foss’s Eagle Scout project and not the actual, more important story behind it.
While the rest of us were closeted in air conditioning during the heat of July, Zachary Foss and his "crew" were busy building a multi-age, multi-purpose activity structure behind the Boys and Girls Club. The seeds for this project were planted many years ago by a variety of individuals who have been instrumental in helping Zachary develop into the responsible young man
he is today.
George and Margaret Foss, Zachary’s proud parents, have spent his lifetime guiding him in all his various endeavors in school and community. Significant community organizations also played an important role in his character development. Zachary became a member of Boy Scouts in first grade. He then became an active member of the Mathews Boys and Girls Club for several years. He and his parents are grateful for the mentorship he received over the years from both these community organizations. When Zachary was beginning to plan for his service project to complete the Eagle Scout requirements, he wanted to give back to an organization that offered mentorship to him.
In order to demonstrate the organizational and leadership skills necessary to attain the Eagle Scout distinction, Zachary had to negotiate the organizational structure of two different systems. Not an easy task for a 14-year-old. In early 2012, he spoke with the former Unit Director at the Boys and Girls Club about his idea of a dream play structure. He was given approval to proceed and began the process of researching various structures and visiting schools, clubs and playgrounds to develop his plan. Zachary submitted his written proposal for this service project to the Boy Scouts of America for final approval.
Due to the generous financial outpouring resulting from his efforts, Zachary broke ground on his project on July 13. Many people came out to support him, providing "muscle" support on this phase of the project: members of Boy Scout Troop 124, the Mathews Rotary Club, students from the U.S. Coast Guard Marine Science Technician School and friends. However, some evenings it was just Zachary and his family working toward the final result depicted in the aforementioned picture.
Zachary is fortunate to live in a community where the youth are supported by organizations such as Boy Scout Troop 124, the Boys and Girls Club, civic organizations and local businesses that give freely of their resources to help our youth here in Mathews realize their dreams.
Port Haywood, Va.