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 About Us š Leaders In Scouting

George Gayman - Portrait of a Lifelong Scouter

Scouting Patches and Making Friends

Patches are the international currency of Scouting.  Gayman has several large Rubbermaid containers of patches and he took lots of old camp-o-ree and council patches to the Jamboree.  “In Europe, they don’t have embroidered patches, so everyone was all over us for American patches,” Gayman said.

Gayman met a young Polish girl named Karla at the Jamboree, and she didn’t speak much English.  “All the boys where grabbing up all the patches and Karla didn’t get one,” Gayman said.  He gave Karla her very own patches.  Gayman said she was so grateful, she was crying and hugging him, saying over and over in broken English, “Thank you, thank you!  No one has never given me anything— they always try to take it.""

"You could really tell it meant a lot to her,” Gayman recalls.  Later at that same Jamboree, he was walking to the hospital to check on one of his Scouts.  There was a young family walking down the same path.  Both parents had an infant, and a two year-old girl was straggling behind.  He asked her parents if she would mind if he carried her, and they said sure.

“She kept playing with my patch on the walk, well, you can guess what happened,” Gayman laughs as he remembers.  He gave the girl a patch, and collected her name and address and sent her a big back patch.  He did the same for some of the boys he met along the way.  He kept in touch with them for a few years.

“You go on trips with these boys and you leave as strangers, but come back best friends.”  Gayman says.  Among his many awards and recognitions, being invited to speak at a boy’s Eagle ceremony, especially that of a boy who doesn’t belong to his troop, is most special.  “My greatest accomplishment is going to a national event or jamboree and a few months later, I start getting letters asking me to come and give an Eagle ceremony, give a speech, or present an award.  It really lets you know your efforts are worthwhile.”

Living By the Scout Motto

You can really tell the difference George has made in so many boys’ lives when you visit a troop meeting.  “George lives by the Scout motto.  One time I spent a week at scout camp (with another troop), and no one had a Class A uniform.  With George, he’s old-school Scouting.  I think he teaches us better because if you don’t know something he helps you learn it.  He tries his hardest to get scouts to advance and stuff, but mostly he teaches how to be a better scout,” said Carl Schoon, a 13 year old with Troop 49.

Carl’s dad, Tim, agrees.  The family came from a troop in Lancaster, and said he could really tell the difference.  “George runs a tight ship,” Tim said.

Committee Chair Leroy Hanson agrees.  “George’s dedicated to Scouting—he’s got a way of doing things that’s successful.  That’s why I’ve spent 25 years working with him,” Leroy said.  “He believes in discipline, and not every family appreciates it at first.  But in the long run, most of them do.”  Hanson’s four sons have each been troop members and one graduated as an Eagle Scout.  “The others got a whiff of gasoline fumes and perfume and didn’t quite make it,” Hanson joked.

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