Whitestone Boy Scout cleans up local churchyard

Photos courtesy of Hunter Brink

A Whitestone teen improved a local churchyard with the help of members in his local Boy Scout troop.

Hunter Brink, 17, organized a cleanup of the courtyard in Whitestone’s Immanuel Lutheran Church as part of his project to achieve the Eagle Scout rank in the Boy Scouts of America.

Hunter was able to gather 25 volunteers from the Boy Scout troop and the church congregation to take part in the cleanup. The group made improvements to the courtyard so it can be better utilized for functions and events during warmer months.

Hunter chose the church courtyard as a way to give back to the house of worship, which permits his Boy Scout troop to use its on-site school for weekly meetings. His family has been members of the church for four generations.

“It feels great to know that I was able to help my church who has supported me and helped me grow spiritually and as an individual,” Brink said.

So far, they have installed more than $1,000 worth of donated PVC fencing, built a 50-foot retaining wall, leveled the ground, pruned trees and removed debris, old fencing and overgrown hedges.

To complete the project, they are still looking to buy picnic tables and some limestone material to build a step to improve senior citizen access to the courtyard.

Brink has been involved with the Boy Scouts of America since taking part as a Cub Scout at the age of 5.

With two younger brothers who are also Boy Scouts, the elder Brink boy serves is a role model as the senior patrol leader of the local troop — a position that requires him to have a hand in planning field trips and lesson plans.

Hunter said that being in a Boy Scout leadership role is a lot of fun in a close community such as Whitestone.

“I love the outdoors, working with people my age and doing things that youth in the city don’t normally get to do,” Brink said.

Brink is also a superstar student. He is currently in the middle of his senior year at Francis Lewis High School with a 93 percent average and three advanced placement classes on his schedule. While he has not yet finished college applications, he aims to study biochemistry and eventually become a doctor or professional in the field of medicine.

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