Ellie, Natalie, Keith and Aiden Jeffery Fenstermacher NOTE Aiden's middle name
Eagle Scout and Scoutmaster
Now that I'm serving on the Nevada Area Council Board for the BSA, I was asked to attend this year's Annual BSA Meeting in Dallas. Marla and I flew there on Thursday. Friday we attended a "Duty to God" Breakfast where Dr. William H. Willimon spoke of the United Methodist Church. David L Beck the LDS church General Young Men's President conducted. Dr. Willimon told a great story about how as a scoutmaster a young scout came up to him on a campout and was in tears because someone had taken his pocket knife that was given to him by his grandfather. They were staying in a cabin and Dr. Willimon lectured the boys about how a scout needs to be honest and trustworthy. He turned the lights out and said that whoever had taken something could return it to the middle of the room and that would be the end of it. Sure enough, after a few seconds he heard a plop in the middle of the room, only to be followed by plop, plop, plop, plop. When he turned on the lights, there was the pocket knife to be sure, but there were a couple of other knives, a Playboy, and some brass knuckles. Afterwards he was talking with the SPL and telling him he could not believe he had such boys in the troop. How could they possibly call themselves scouts. To this the SPL replied, "Why the hell do you think we are in scouts? If we could make ourselves better by ourselves we wouldn't need scouting." A great story and a great lesson. After the breakfast I attended the general business session and a couple of classes. One on BSA insurance ( I fell asleep) and one class on the 2011 World Jamboree in Sweden. How I would love to be a Scoutmaster for that. (Don't think that will happen.) That night we went to a very nice dinner with the other members there from our Council. At a reception prior to dinner we met Steve Holcomb, the Captain of the 2010 Gold Medal Olympic bobsled team. I talked to him for a little while. He let me hold his medal. (Very Heavy!)
Friday was the American Experience Breakfast and Ralph de la Vega ( current CEO of ATT Mobil ) spoke. He is of Cuba descent and came to the USA when he was 10 years old. After the communist took over Cuba. His family was planning to come to the US togeth, however there paperwork got messed up and at the airport they were told the five words that completely changed Ralph's world. "Only the boy can go". They decided to send the boy ahead thinking they would follow in a few days. It took them three years to immigrate to the USA. In the mean time Ralph lived with friends and relatives. His story was very inspiring.
Friday Night was the Silver Buffalo Awards. We saw Rex Tillerson the CEO of ATT, and the CEO of Exxon. We also saw President Thomas S Monson, the YM and Primary Presidencies at a special LDS reception. For the first time in my life I got to shake the hand of the Prophet.
Saturday Marla and I had a play day in Dallas. We went to the Air Museum at Love Field, and the Dallas Museum of Art. I bought some Luchesse cowboy boots. We had dinner with one of my first scouts 28 years ago, Keith Fenstermacher. He saw Marla's facebook page that we were in Dallas ( he lives by Plano a half hour away) and he contacted Marla through facebook and we arranged to meet. It was good to see he is continuing the Scouting tradition. He is getting ready to take a group of scouts to Philmont this summer.
After dinner we went to see a Broadway play. I had arranged to get ticket to Avenue Q. It thought it would be like Sesame Street because of the puppets. Boy was I wrong. It was an R rated version of the muppets doing La Bohem. I can not recommend it.
All in all a great trip. Met lots of great people. Got to see the BSA on the national scale. Had fun with Marla.