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Teen plants shrubs at Mt. Pleasant church for Eagle Scout project

| Thursday, Oct. 11, 2012, 1:58 a.m.
For The Mt. Pleasant Journal
Christoper Kelley 16, of Mt Pleasant shows the landscaping he recently completed at the Mt. Pleasant Church of God as his final requirement in obtaining his Eagle Scout rank in a photo taken on Wednesday, Oct. 3, 2012. Cami DiBattista | For The Mt. Pleasant Journal

Eight dump trucks full of debris and two additional truckloads of tree stumps were recently hauled away the Mt. Pleasant Church of God on Main Street as part of a service project completed by local teen Christopher Kelley.

The project was a requirement to earn the rank of Eagle Scout — the highest rank that can be earned in the Boy Scouts of America program.

Kelley, 16, a sophomore at Mt. Pleasant Area Junior/Senior High School, has attended the Mt. Pleasant Church of God since he was born.

He therefore considered improving the church in some way to be an obvious option when seeking ways to fulfill his service project, he said.

“We wanted to keep it church oriented,” said Mark Kelley, Christopher's father, who helped with the project, along with friends, family and fellow local Boy Scouts.

Kelley said completing the project has brought him a sense of true fulfillment.

“It feels pretty good (to have completed something nice for the church),” he said.

As part of the project, Kelley cleared two sides of the church of debris and planted more than 30 new bushes at the site.

He and his crew then placed 11 tons of river rock was placed around the shrubs and built a small rock wall to encircle a new, decorative garden.

“The trees were up in the gutters, blocking the windows,” Kelley said. “So we trimmed all those back too.”

Kelley said he would like to thank the congregation for funding for the project, and Mt. Pleasant Borough officials for lending a truck to haul the debris and Benson Domasky of Mt. Pleasant for loaning equipment and also his time to help with the landscaping.

“They did a great job,” said the Rev. Brad Adams, the church's pastor, “It looks very nice.”

Kelley has been a member of Mt. Pleasant Boy Scout Troop No. 133 for several years, he said. Being in the troop is tradition, as his father earned the honor of Eagle Scout with the very same troop.

Both father and son agree that the Boy Scout program is one that teaches skills and creates experiences that last a lifetime.

They suggest any youth who would like to embrace the leadership and lifesaving skills that result from being in Scouts give the program a try and recommend Troop No. 133 that meets weekly at the Mt. Pleasant VFW Post 3368 at 416 W. Main St.

With the completion of his service project, Kelley is now awaiting word from Boy Scout International that he has been accepted to the rank of Eagle Scout.

Cami DiBattista is a freelance writer.