Boy Scout Troop 300 receives fourth place in Colgate-Palmolive 31st annual Youth for America campaign

Boy Scout Troop 300, chartered by St. Matthew Catholic Church, received notification that its entry in Colgate-Palmolive Company’s 31st annual campaign of community service was chosen as fourth place winner.
A panel of judges chose this project from among thousands of entries as one of the best examples of community service in the nation. Troop 300 was awarded fourth place prize of $100 for its entry submitted for Philip Kreckel’s Eagle Scout project. His project involved the construction of an outdoor granite altar and brick paver patio at Oak Grove Cemetery.
Father Joseph Orr, pastor of St. Matthew Parish, offered his idea of having a granite altar constructed to have a place for outdoor masses in Oak Grove Cemetery. Last year was the 150th Anniversary of St. Matthew Parish, and it was his desire to have the altar completed, along with the burial of a time capsule.
In March of 2003, Kreckel met with St. Matthew Parish Council, the Cemetery Committee and Penn Woods Council Eagle Project Committee. Permission granted, and with the help of local contractor, Jack O’Connell, the project was laid out at Oak Grove Cemetery. Dick Stever of Mayes Memorials provided his expertise in the design, construction and set-up of the granite.
Kreckel said, “Mr. Stever was reimbursed for the cost of the granite only. He offered all his services of set-up, design and construction at no charge. I could not have pulled off this project without his help.”
After the granite was set, Kreckel set out to obtain the patio pavers for the 10 foot by 10 foot area around the altar. Through the support of Lowes in Altoona, he was given a substantial discount on the pavers. When it came time to install the pavers, Aaron Scordo, who got his Eagle Scout from Troop 300 over five years ago, offered his services and expertise.
Kreckel said, “I just wanted Aaron to look at the base on my project, but six hours later, we laid the last paver down. Aaron was extremely helpful. He is such a great example of how an Eagle Scout can keep giving back to the program. He showed me how I can repay my debt to all those who helped me on my journey.”
Kreckel feels he owes a debt of gratitude to his Boy Scout Troop 300. The Eagle Scout project is an opportunity for the candidate to act as a project manager. He must enlist the help of the other Scouts on his troop. Scouts from Troop 300 helped him raise the funds by having a car wash at Kopp Drug Store and by having a Mother’s Day flower sale.
These fundraisers, along with the support of St. Matthew’s parishioners, provided the funds to see the project through.
Dennis Boscaino donated and delivered the stone base for the patio. Scouts and leaders from his troop helped prepare the stone base, as well as plant flowers, and landscape the completed project. Kreckel was most pleased to see Mrs. Claudia Reed, chairman of the Catholic Committee on Scouting, and her daughter, come down from Cresol to help plant flowers. Over 148 man hours and nearly $2,000 was spent completing this project that will be used for generations to come.
Kreckel said most of all his family has provided the support necessary for such a project to be completed.
“My mom and dad have been with me from the moment I wanted to join scouting as a Tiger Cub in first grade. My sisters helped me unload bricks and provided refreshments. Although I have lots of great memories of camping, canoeing and hiking, without a doubt, my Eagle project is something I will get great satisfaction from for years to come.
“I am so delighted to see that such a large company as Colgate Palmolive recognized my scout troop for all of their hard work.”