Source: Lake Geneva Regional News

No reason to be ashamed: Patrol leader makes Eagle

by Steve Targo

January 20, 2011

Geneva — Jordon Drohner said since he was 6, he wanted to become an Eagle Scout as soon as he could.

“It’s the highest rank in the Boy Scouts,” he said in December, shortly before the powers that be would decide if Jordon, now 14, would achieve his dream.

Last year, Jordon and his close friends, Jackson Seeberg and Logan Tenney, both also 14, began the arduous task of becoming Eagle Scouts.

“Only one out of 100 Boy Scouts get Eagle because of how much commitment it takes,” Jordon said.

So, the three Badger High School freshmen embarked on their journey to reach Eagle, helping each other along the way. They worked on Jordon’s project to create a better volleyball court at Big Foot Beach State Park, Lake Geneva. Then, they helped Tenney install bat houses at the park. Lastly, they helped Seeberg improve Mc-Kay Park in Pell Lake.

Jordon’s mother, Dyan, said the three boys are “pretty tight.”

“They have many opportunities to compete with each other, but they really don’t,” she said.

But what if Jordon didn’t make Eagle?

“I would be ashamed,” he said.

Turns out, Jordon and his friends had nothing to worry about.

According to Dyan, the trio recently discovered they’re now Eagle Scouts. A special ceremony is set for Feb. 26 at Hawk’s View Golf Course.

Two other important people will be honored at this ceremony — Jordon’s dad, Gerald Six Jr., who died when Jordon was 8, and his grandfather, Lowell Nelson, who died last April, when Jordon was about midway through his Eagle Scout project.

Jordon said both of them gave him inspiration.

“When I was younger, my dad got me into scouting,” he said.

Jordon also credited his older brother, Brandon. At the very least, Brandon introduced Jordon to what would be his favorite book back when he was 6 years old.

“Jordon went to kindergarten with the Boy Scout Handbook in his backpack every day,” Dyan said. “He even convinced his teacher to read a story out of it during class.”

This was when the Drohners lived in Orange County, Calif. Four years ago, they moved to Geneva Township. Jordon attended Woods School prior to starting his first year in Badger.

But he doesn’t act like other 14-year-olds. In December, Jordon spoke with confidence and maturity about winning the Arrow of Light in March 2006 and living essentially out of a backpack for two weeks with seven other Boy Scouts last summer in Philmont, N.M.

“We had between 50 and 60 pounds on our backs,” Jordon said. “You’re completely secluded — no cell phones, no contact with the outside world.”

Jordon is a senior patrol leader for Boy Scout Troop 239.

“I have to direct the boys,” Jordon said. “I open our meetings and close them. I do flag ceremonies.”

He’s been in Boy Scouts for eight years.

“I like camping,” Jordon said. “I like the outdoors and I like fundraisers, working toward something, then getting it.”

How he got it

When it came time to complete his Eagle Scout project, Jordon said the hard part was paperwork and meeting the prerequisite number of badges — not so much the physical labor or selecting a community project.

“I needed 21 badges and I ended up having 24,” Jordon said.

“Twenty-six, by the time you were all done,” Dyan corrected.

“Still, it took me nine drafts, back and forth, between me and Steve Scheel, my Eagle adviser,” Jordon said.

As for the volleyball court, Jordon said he received a wish list of sorts of potential park projects from Anne Korman, manager of Big Foot Beach State Park.

“I just chose a volleyball court because it seemed to me the most productive project,” Jordon said. “They had one there, but it was basically just a pile of dirt with two posts. It wasn’t even regulation-sized.”

“It was just the same grass that you find all over the park,” Dyan said.

“The poles looked just awkward,” Jordon said. “The court hadn’t been used for at least a few years.”

So, with some help from area businesses, his would-be fellow Eagle Scout buddies and about 27 other volunteers, Jordon saw his vision come to life.

“I dug down (about) 1- and 3-foot holes for the (new) poles,” he said.

“We had 40 tons of gravel and on top of that we had landscape fabric.

We had 250 yards of it (and we built) a 29.6-by-59-foot pad. Then we poured sand on top.”

Dyan said 80 tons of sand was used.

“I don’t think I had to pay for anything, which was really good,” Jordon said. “It was all donated.”

Dyan said Jordon called to solicit donations. Jordon said employees from the companies which helped volunteered their personal time to help with the digging and pouring.

All in all, it was 153 hours of work.

In a Jan. 6 e-mail, Dyan stated “this honor is huge” for Jordon.

But it’s not just for him.

“We three moms are really excited about these Eagles,” she said in December, accurately predicting the future.

After all, hard work breeds excellence.

“They have until 18 to reach Eagle,” Dyan said. “These guys are going to knock it out at 14.”