Why This Eagle Is the First of Many to Take Flight

Eagle Scout Tim K. was honored with the Eagle Scout rank after completing a project to honor his community’s first casualty of the Vietnam War. (Photo credit: Ginger Brashinger, Daily Southtown)

Eagle Scout Tim K. of the Pathway to Adventure Council is the first Scout to earn Scouting’s highest rank in his troop – but that’s not the only “first” this high-achieving Scout can claim. Tim has been paving a Scouting legacy since he was a Tiger Cub Scout in first grade and is inspiring others to follow in his footsteps.

“There has to be a first for everything,” said Eagle Scout Tim K. to the Chicago Tribune. “So…since I got it done first, it is now my responsibility to ensure that the boys behind me achieve the rank of Eagle as well.”

Tim is also a founding member of his five-year-old troop. The group celebrated the milestone during a year-end Court of Honor with his family and local supporters. 

Tim says his troop, parents and many others helped him along the way – especially when he sought to memorialize a local Vietnam War hero for his Eagle Scout project.

Captain Ronald L. Zinn Memorial Garden (Photo via the Captain Ronald L. Zinn Memorial Garden Facebook page)

Eighteen volunteers and 130 hours later, Tim unveiled the Captain Ronald L. Zinn Memorial Garden to honor Orland Park’s first Vietnam War casualty from 1965.

“I first learned about Ron Zinn in 2012 when our troop created a historical geochallenge for Orland Park,” the Eagle shared with Orland Park Patch. “I saw a rock monument for him over near the Loebe Center and decided that he deserved something more. That’s how I worked with the Village of Orland Park and the Veterans Commission to create a garden to forever remember this local and national hero.”

What’s next after becoming the first Eagle in his troop’s history? His primary goal is to mentor others on their journey to Eagle Scout.

“It’s pretty cool to be first Eagle in the history of our troop and it’s even more cool because I have a lot of guys right behind me, all going for Eagle,” Tim said to Orland Park Patch. “I’m looking forward to helping each of them get there.”

Read the full story about this Eagle Scout who is starting a legacy of Eagles in his community by visiting the Chicago Tribune and the Orland Park Patch.


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Hayley Cordaro is a communications specialist at the Boy Scouts of America. She loves sharing inspiring success stories and uncovering new ways volunteers and employees can make the most of their Scouting experience. If you have story ideas or questions, reach out to us at