Pres. Hunter: Ardent supporter of Scouting

President Howard W. Hunter has been an active, enthusiastic participant in Scouting as a young man, parent and priesthood leader - earning the Eagle Scout award as a youth, Distinguished Eagle as an adult and currently serving on the Boy Scouts of America National Advisory Council.

Boy Scouts of America had existed for 10 years when young Howard was ordained a deacon in the Aaronic Priesthood on June 21, 1920, in Boise, Idaho. The partnership between the Church and Boy Scouts of America had been formally established in February 1913.As Scouting spread throughout the Church and the country in general, the young man became eagerly involved in the program, working on a variety of merit badges. As her son progressed in Scouting, President Hunter's mother, Nellie, proudly sewed his merit badges onto a piece of cloth, outlining each badge with a buttonhole stitch.

The young Scout received his Eagle award on May 11, 1923. He was the second youth in Boise to receive the Eagle, the first having been awarded to Edwin Phipps two months previous.

Several years later, as a young man living with his parents in Southern California, President Hunter was called as Scoutmaster in the Adams Ward. As a young married man in 1935, President Hunter was called to direct the Scouting program in the Hollywood Stake. In that position he represented the stake on the Los Angeles Metropolitan Area Scout Council and was a district commissioner.

While serving as a bishop during World War II and faced with a shortage of men to fill callings, President Hunter assumed the responsibility of Scoutmaster, helping the young men earn their merit badges and qualify for rank advancements. He worked with the Scouts for two years, taking them on frequent overnight campouts and other activities.

As his own sons, John and Richard, grew and began their Scouting participation, President Hunter would help them with their awards and would frequently accompany them on troop and their own father-son camping trips.

Following in their father's footsteps, both John and Richard received their Eagle awards.

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