Eagle Scout – The rank of Eagle is the highest award a boy can earn in the Boy Scouts of America (BSA). Less than 4% of boys who enter Boy Scouts achieve this rank. The significance of this award is two-fold. First, Tyler was able to earn the rank of Eagle by completing all the requirements as outlined by the BSA. His disabilities were not an excuse to not complete requirements. Tyler always embraced his disabilities wholeheartedly. He joined the very few who achieve the rank of Eagle. Second, and more importantly to Tyler, he accomplished this goal by being part of a “typical” troop. He went through Scouting with his friends and neighbors … the same ones he went through school with from preschool to graduation. Tyler would never support the concept of a “special” troop for “special” kids with disabilities. We all are who we are and should be a part of the whole community, not a separate community. Tyler played this part well. There was never any question from fellow Scouts that Tyler would be participating in whatever activity was underway. It was a given … as it should be.
Tyler would want people to view his Scouting journey not so much for what he accomplished, but for the way in which he did it … with everyone else.