Eagle Scout Meets Current Members of the Troop He Founded 45 Years Earlier

Photo credit: Bryan on Scouting
Photo credit: Bryan on Scouting

When Scout Kevin Dowling started a new troop for his Eagle project in 1971, he had no idea that more than four decades later, the past would come back around.

Fast forward 45 years to this summer, when Scouts from Troop 918 of the Baltimore Area Council encountered one of Philmont’s general managers as they were about to embark on a 70-mile trek through the High-Adventure Base in New Mexico.

The manager was none other than Dowling, the founder of the very troop. The Eagle Scout-turned-High-Adventure professional had heard about the troop’s arrival at Philmont and decided to pay the Scouts a visit and see them off as they began the 12-day trek.

In a recent post, Bryan on Scouting tells the inspiring story of Dowling, who as an Eagle Scout candidate, devoted his service project to laying the foundation for a troop that would later become “one of the most tradition-focused troops in the Baltimore Area Council,” according to Philmont trek advisor Chris Chamberlin.

Upon their return, the Scouts were again greeted by Dowling, only this time, they had a surprise for him.  Dowling was presented with a crew T-shirt “as a gesture of thanks and to commemorate the successful completion of their trek,” said Chamberlin.

“Kevin Dowling could not have known, way back in 1971, that his idea to start a new Scout troop would last and grow,” Chamberlin told Bryan on Scouting. “After all, without attention and support, many troops falter and fold, remaining only a memory in the minds of Scouts who had participated.”

Dowling was granted the rare opportunity to see the product of his service living on through the troop he started years ago, and the Scouts who are now working to make a difference through their own acts of service.

To read more about this story, check out the original article from Bryan on Scouting.


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Rochelle Randles is a communications specialist at the Boy Scouts of America. She enjoys sharing incredible adventure stories within the Scouting community and beyond. If you have story ideas or questions, reach out to us at