Skip to comments.Sept. 11 memorial dedicated; so is Scout (Eagle Scout project -- front page news)
Posted on 11/25/2002 11:10:34 AM PST by thinktwice
FOUNTAIN VALLEY Ben Narodick, 17, sat in his room studying the criteria for selecting his Eagle Scout project and noted a line indicating it should have a significant and lasting effect.
The words shifted his thoughts to Sept. 11, 2001, and the terrorist attacks that left so many people with a lasting sadness and anger.
An idea popped into his head: Build a monument in his hometown to all victims of terrorist attacks.
And it should include a piece of the wreckage from the World Trade Center.
Trouble was, this was a highly ambitious project and Narodick needed to complete it by his 18th birthday to earn Eagle Scout status - the Boy Scouts' highest rank. He had less than eight months to plan, recruit volunteers and finish the memorial.
His friends and Scout advisers quietly suggested he try something a little easier.
"I was really focused on my idea. After 9/11, everybody has been affected by terrorism," said Narodick, a senior at Fountain Valley High School. "I knew that if I really put my mind to it, I could get it done."
And so he did.
On Sunday, about 150 friends, fellow Boy Scouts and city officials attended the unveiling of the Fountain Valley Memorial Against Terrorism.
The 7-foot-tall, concrete- and-steel monument stands next to a reflecting pool outside the Fountain Valley Public Library.
The centerpiece: a 350-pound section of steel girder from the wreckage of the World Trade Center.
"I've seen a lot of Eagle Scout projects - this is the ultimate," said Bill Mullee Sr., a Huntington Beach resident who has three sons who earned Eagle Scout rank.
"This took a lot of perseverance," said Mullee, a New York native. "It really connects people here to the tragedy thousands of miles away."
Jeff Campana, Scoutmaster of Narodick's Huntington Beach-based Troop 319, said he knew that if anybody could get it done, it would be Narodick.
"This was a true test of leadership and organizational skills," Campana said. "Ben just doesn't give up."
Narodick turns 18 on Jan. 11. He's expected to earn the rank of Eagle Scout by year's end.
Even Narodick, an honor student and varsity football team lineman, admits he doubted himself along the way.
The project began in early June with a handwritten letter to New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, asking if he could obtain a piece of the Trade Center wreckage.
New York officials said he'd need support from Fountain Valley officials before they would consider releasing any wreckage. Otherwise, they said, he could just be some kid out to auction it on eBay.
So Narodick went to City Hall, where the city manager faxed a letter on his behalf. A seemingly endless series of faxes followed.
Finally, Narodick got the thumbs up to secure a section of steel from the Staten Island landfill where tower wreckage was taken. But he had no way to get to New York and no money to have it shipped.
He called Federal Express headquarters in Memphis, Tenn. The company arranged to handle the shipping free.
At home, he sketched drawings of his concept for the memorial, then went to a local design firm for professional help.
"After sitting down with Ben for just a few minutes, it was clear how serious he was," said Gary Vasquez, a Fountain Valley-based landscape architect who donated about 25 hours to the project. "It felt good to be a part of it."
Narodick contacted local contractors to donate materials and supervise the project.
After being steered through a maze of bureaucracy, the steel arrived at City Hall in August, where it remained until the memorial could be prepared.
"It was just a piece of steel. But it was awe-inspiring to think where it had been, what it was part of," Narodick said.
He enlisted the help of fellow Scouts to clear overgrown bushes, lay stone at the memorial's base and pour cement. "Everywhere I went, people were willing to help any way they could. Whether it was donating supplies or picking up a shovel to help, people wanted to honor those who lost their lives," Narodick said.
"I definitely couldn't have done this alone."
Zach Stone, 19, a Fountain Valley resident whose father, Douglas, died Sept. 11, 2001, on American Airlines Flight 11, attended Sunday's ceremony.
"It says a lot about his character that he was able to follow through on all of this," Stone said. "This is a great tribute to everybody who has been affected by terrorism."
(Excerpt) Read more at 2.ocregister.com ...
That sort of intolerance is worse than terrorism.
Hopefully, you are attempting humor, here, so I'll join in:
You make an excellent point with your satirical comment! Bending over (so to speak) to ALLOW B-F'rs or atheists to be part of this effort would be to ACCEPT terrorism. After all, the deviant life-style folks (whose self exteem is so low they have to define themselves by advertising their bedroom habits, or by proclaiming loudly their stand that there is no being superior to them and they are but an accidental combination of chemicals and fluids from some swamp somewhere) use the terrorist tactics of intolerance and inflamatory language to further THEIR positions!
Tolerance of the intolerable, i.e., political correctness, is worse than terrorism!
I'm series!! LOL
Your own personal disrespect for others -- is showing.
BTW I would have loved to be a flyervet! Eyes. So I fixed airborne navaids systems prior to AECP and comm engineering. Two best assignments were (tactical) combat comm unit in Europe and OSI in Wash., DC! Never had a BAD assignment, although a couple were "interesting" (like the old Chinese curse, "May you live in interesting times!" - LOL).
Happy Thanksgiving! GBA!