Members of Boy Scout Troop 665 from Rincon United Methodist Church joined Eagle candidate Madison Mettler on Saturday for his Eagle Scout project at the Effingham County Animal Shelter.
The project made improvements consistent with the needs of an aging facility — painting the patio area, landscaping the gardens and painting the interior of the kennels area of the shelter. The hopes are to add visual appeal, which will help attract county residents to stop by during the week and look at adopting a spayed or neutered cat or dog.
Mettler began his Scouting career while a first grader at Rincon Elementary School, as a Tiger Cub Scout of Pack 650 at Grace Community Church just outside Rincon. Cub Scouting is the largest of the three Scouting programs of the Boy Scouts of America. The first two years, while a Tiger Cub, his father Mark Mettler, an Eagle Scout himself, and a Wood Badge-certified Scouter, served as a leader within the pack.
After introduction to Cub Scouting as a Tiger, Mettler continued in Cubs where leaders worked with him in character development, spiritual growth, good citizenship, sportsmanship and fitness, family understanding, respectful relationships, personal achievement, friendly service, fun and adventure and preparation for Boy Scouts.
Mettler completed all the steps of Cub Scouting and became a Webelos Scout, achieving his Arrow of Light and Crossing Over into the Boy Scout program while he was attending Ebenezer Middle School. At age 11, he joined Troop 665, where he quickly earned the first rank of Boy Scouting by becoming a Scout.
Troop 665 has been led by veteran Scoutmaster Ken Luikart for more than 35 years. Luikart is a retired Army colonel and member of Rincon United Methodist Church and he has led more than 80 boys to the rank of Eagle Scout.
His father and step-mother, Ruth Mettler, both became assistant scoutmasters at the troop. During his membership in Troop 665, he has served the community for countless hours and camped out numerous nights, including summer camp at Camp Rainey Mountain near Helen, with the many other boys in Rincon’s largest and oldest Boy Scout troop.
Mettler is a student at Effingham County High School, where he is in the band, and a member of Rincon First Baptist Church. He expects to earn his Eagle Scout badge this summer.
Mettler chose the animal shelter as a project because he likes animals and would like to see more responsible people become pet owners by adopting a “fixed” animal that will share its love with its new owners and bring joy to a new family.
“The shelter doesn’t get that much attention from people,” he said.
The shelter can be reached weekdays at 754-2109 or by e-mail at AnimalShelter@EffinghamCounty.org.
Donations of dry pet food, leashes and collars and towels are accepted.