Boy Scouts honored by city
MADISON – Life Scout Wilson Caudell said it felt great to be recognized along with his fellow Scouts for all the work he and his Troop 15 put into rebuilding the Simmons Arboretum bridge.
“There was what felt like a sense of finality of the project being done and recognized,” Caudell said. “I’m happy I was able to do the project and for the city and make it a better place.”
Madison Mayor Mary Hawkins-Butler began the Jan. 17 city meeting by recognizing Troop 15 with certificates.
“Tonight we’re celebrating and showing our appreciation for their wonderful work on the Arboretum and bringing it back to life by building the bridge,” Hawkins-Butler said. “Great things are going to happen on those grounds. We can learn about nature, see plants native to Mississippi, and more.”
Troop 15 Scoutmaster Matthew Thompson said Wilson Caudell’s work on rebuilding the Simmons Arboretum bridge in December 2022 wasn’t just an Eagle Scout project.
“Wilson had to come up with an idea, come up with a plan, and then had to lead about 20 scouts, ages 12 to 15,” Thompson said. “It wasn’t just a couple of hours. This took weeks of planning, and a whole weekend to implement. Wilson did a good job and showed leadership. He led this project.”
Thompson recognized each scout who took part in the project, including Wilson Caudell, Jacob Caudell, Kareem Elearky, Skylar Gentry, Joseph Rolfe, Henry Neukirk, James Parmley, Joseph Parmley, Max Sanders, Nick Tucker, Drew Tucker, Partha Yerra, Henry Barnett, Nick LaFleur, and Will Thompson.
Madison Parks and Recreation Director Cole Smith said Wilson Caudell, soon-to-be Eagle Scout, reached out to him last summer and said he was looking for an Eagle Scout project.
“I’ve been here since April of last year and one of the first projects the mayor and I discussed was bringing the Simmons Arboretum to life,” Smith said. “I figured what better way for a Boy Scout to work towards his Eagle and being able to work on something like this. We discussed the native vegetation out there and rebuilding the bridge. You all did an excellent job and we appreciate what you’ve done.”