Five brothers share scouting honor

Published 10:04 am Tuesday, May 29, 2007

For Andrew and Alex Johnson, scouting isn’t just something to do — it’s a family tradition.

The Johnson brothers, along with their scoutmate Taylor Radzewicz, were awarded the status of Eagle Scout — the highest honor the Boy Scouts of America bestows — Thursday night.

What makes the Johnsons stand out is their being awarded Eagle Scout makes them the fourth and fifth members of their family to achieve the honor.

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Their brothers Chad, Forrest and Jay have also received the honor.

“That’s five boys and five Eagle (Scouts),” Scoutmaster Rickey Warren said. “I don’t know if there is any other family in the world that has done that.”

The elder three Johnson brothers took part in the ceremony.

Jay Johnson, a member of the National Guard who will be deployed to Iraq in August, escorted the candidates to their places for the ceremony.

Forrest Johnson gave the candidates the Eagle Scout charge.

“Be a leader, but lead only to the best,” he said.

Chad Johnson led the candidates in the Eagle Scout pledge.

The candidates pledged on their honor to do their best duty to God and their country.

Only one in 50 scouts ever achieve Eagle Scout, Warren said.

“These scouts are like my sons,” Warren said. “I was honored to present my own son as an Eagle Scout, and I am honored today.”

In addition to having to earn various merit badges from the Boy Scouts, each Eagle Scout candidate must complete a community service project.

Andrew Johnson, 20, did landscaping at the Adams County Sheriff’s office in downtown Natchez.

Alex Johnson, 18, repainted the Red Cross building on Union Street.

Radzewicz, 19, cleared a portion of the Natchez City Cemetary that had become overgrown.

“A lot of trees and shrubbery had grown up among some of the older graves,” he said.

Looking back over his years of scouting, Radewicz said it was a lot of hard work.

“I’m going to miss it, though,” he said.