Local Scout Stands Tall Despite Challenges

By Erin Epstein

Boy Scout GatesSpencer Gates, a high school senior, has a condition that makes it difficult for him to walk more than a few steps, but he didn’t let that stop him from running with his passion for helping the community through Boy Scouts.

The Boy Scouts of America, Los Angeles Area Council (LAAC) serves more than 13,000 boys in 570 scout units in Los Angeles and 56 surrounding communities, from South Pasadena to San Pedro, an area that encompasses some of the county’s most impoverished neighborhoods.

Gates, who has been a patrol leader and holds the rank of Eagle Scout, attended Forest Lawn Scout Reservation at Camp Circle X. With the help of his dad, Kevin, Gates was able to complete the Merit Badge Program and earn the Horsemanship Merit Badge while at the camp. The staff worked together to see that he was able to fully participate in the program.

Gates completed all of the program’s requirements with just a few adjustments to accommodate his physical challenges. Some of his favorite activities included working at a forge, making a metal arrowhead and shooting a black powder rifle at the John Wayne Outpost. He even rode a horse at a trot in the riding arena and zip lined across Firebird Lake.

Although gets around with the help of a power wheelchair, Spencer Gates stands tall as a Boy Scout leader.

To learn more about the Boy Scouts of America, Los Angeles Area Council, visit www.boyscoutsla.org.

For more Community News, click here.

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