HANSON — Like many Eagle Scouts, Michael Curran, 17, was honored to receive congratulatory letters from President Trump, former presidents George W. Bush and Jimmy Carter; U.S. Senators Ed Markey and Elizabeth Warren; and Gov. Charlie Baker. Curran also received a congratulatory letter from a Vatican representative of Pope Francis.
But how many Scouts receive a letter from their favorite football coach, Patriots Head Coach Bill Belichik — as well as an autographed photo from wrestler-turned-actor Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson — congratulating him on his new rank of Eagle Scout?
“Any Super Bowl tickets go with that?” an audience member asked about the Belichik letter.
Those presentations by Troop 68 Scoutmaster Kevin Keane concluded the Court of Honor ceremony Sunday, Oct, 27 at Lakeside Villa, Halifax, before the Patriots game was turned on in the adjacent buffet room during refreshments.
A perfect conclusion to an event honoring a Scout who ended his own speech with, “Go, Pats!”
Curran is among four Troop 68 Scout to achieve his Eagle Badge this year, following two other Scouts — Alec Fraser and Jacob Barbato who completed that work last year. Liam Keane will have his Court of Honor on Nov. 22 and Michael Doucette’s will be held on Dec. 8, both at Camp Kiwanee. Zev Andruk earned his Eagle Award Oct. 22, and will have his Court of Honor at a later date.
Curran’s mom Maura had the honor of pinning on his new Eagle Badge, while his dad Jim bestowed a new Eagle neckerchief on him during the ceremony, which started with the presentation of the Colors, recitation of the Scout Oath and Law, a prayer by the Rev. Kwang Lee and a candle ceremony signifying the qualities in the oath, the spirit of Scouting and the path to an Eagle Award.
“This is an occasion for pride and joy as well as a time for serious reflection,” said Mark Derocher, assistant Scoutmaster. “The Eagle Award is the highest rank of recognition that Scouting offers to a Boy Scout. It is earned through the advancement program and only a small percentage of boys who begin with Scouting are recognized with this honor.”
Curran has earned 34 merit badges, 13 more than required for Eagle rank.
Selectman Jim Hickey, state Rep. Josh Cutler, D-Duxbury, and state Sen. Mike Brady, D-Brockton, also attended the ceremony to present citations in honor of the event from the Hanson Board of Selectmen and the Mass. General Court.
Curran’s project was placing handicapped-accessible picnic tables at the snack area at Hanson’s Botieri Field, LZ Thomas and Robinson ball fields. “I was a part of youth sports for over 20 years in town,” Hickey said. “I told [Michael] how much I appreciated him doing [the project] over at the field.”
“This is quite an achievement,” said Cutler, who lamented not sticking with Scouting himself as a youth. “It’s important to acknowledge both his achievement, but also as a community, I see how many folks are getting their Eagle Scout here in Hanson. This is unusual — the number of Eagle Scouts that we have — and that’s because of the great program you have.”
Brady read the resolution and offered a comment about his own Scouting experience.
“I was lucky I was a tenderfoot,” Brady said. “I want to thank all the Scout leaders out there because, without your support these Eagle achievements would not become possible.”
Assistant Scoutmaster, and Deputy Fire Chief Rob O’Brien presented congratulatory certificates from himself and Fire Chief Jerome Thompson Jr., and Police Chief Michael Miksch sent congratulations on Curran’s Eagle Award.
Curran thanked his fellow Troop members for their support of his project and the fundraising for it, as well as his parents and family. He also thanked master woodworker Charlie Garcia for his help.
“He took the time to help create a detailed material list and helped me make plans, so I could make these picnic tabled handicapped accessible,” Curran said. “He also welcomed us into his home for several weekends and helped us create quality picnic tables. Without his help, this project would not be possible.”
He presented mentor pins to his cousin Conor Keane and Troop Treasurer Kris Fraser.