ZIONSVILLE, IN – On Veterans Day over 100 Scouts and their adult leaders at Union Elementary School in Zionsville launched a new Cub Scout organization. The group, known by its new numerals, Pack 105, is sponsored by American Legion Post 79, further strengthening the Scouts’ commitment to those who serve our country in uniform. Last year, the Scouts’ Half to Heroes initiative provided over $3,000 to help those serving in the military, making the boys of Pack 105 America’s first Cub Scouts to contribute their own hard-earned popcorn sales rewards to support needy soldiers and their families.
“The veterans of American Legion Post 79 are proud to be associated with the famous Half to Heroes Scouts,” said Post Commander William Parker. “The generosity and service provided by these special Scouts to our veterans are deeply appreciated and we are delighted to lend our support to Pack 105.”
Until now Zionsville has been the only community in the country to be organized into a single Cub Scout organization, commonly known as a “pack.” In nearly all other communities, individual Cub Scout packs contain Scouts from a single elementary school to ensure high quality programming. With the formation of Pack 105, Zionsville is now served by two Cub Scout packs: Pack 105 at Union Elementary and Pack 358 at the other three elementary schools.
At the November 12th event, the Pack 105 Scouts solemnly placed into a soldier’s helmet over $1,000 in gift cards to assist Marine Sergeant Jesse James and his family with their transition to civilian life. Sergeant James, who was present for the ceremony, is recovering from significant injuries sustained during his three tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan. In August, James became the nation’s first veteran to receive a new home constructed by the Homes for Wounded Warriors Program and Boone County Habitat for Humanity. The James family now lives in Advance, Indiana, in western Boone County.
“Given the Scouts’ historic support of our soldiers, it was fitting that we launched our new Cub Scout Pack 105 on Veterans Day,” said Cubmaster Tom Sugar, the Scouts’ leader. “Meeting Sergeant James in person allowed the Scouts to deeply understand the importance and impact of their generosity to soldiers in need.”
Each fall, Scouts knock on doors in their communities to sell popcorn to benefit Scouting programs at the national, state and local level. As an incentive for selling, Scouts can earn gift cards from Amazon or Walmart. For example, a Scout who sells between $250 and $349 in popcorn earns a gift card worth $10. The rewards become larger with increased sales. Every dollar contributed to the Half to Heroes initiative represents hours of personal effort by these first grade through fifth grade boys.
“My family and I simply cannot find the words to express our appreciation to the Scouts of Pack 105,” said Sergeant James. “What a remarkable example these exceptional Scouts have set for others to follow!”
At their first meeting, the Scouts of Pack 105 also adopted “shared beliefs and obligations” for their new group called “We Believe Scouting Is…” The attached document, inspired by the Declaration of Independence, establishes high standards for the Pack 105 Scouts, adult leaders and parents. Among the guidelines are a commitment to selflessly serve others and to “walk the walk” of Scouting values daily by practicing honesty, kindness, loyalty and other moral codes of conduct.
As “founding fathers” of the Pack 105, all of the Scouts and adult leaders are entitled to wear a prominent “Founder” designation on their uniforms in accordance with Boy Scouts of America policies.
“Having fun in Cub Scouts is important, but so much more can be gained when the full potential of the program is realized,” said Tom Petersen, the Pack 105 Committee Chairman. “Our vision for Pack 105 is to b