The student news site of George Rogers Clark High School

Smoke Signals Student Media

The student news site of George Rogers Clark High School

Smoke Signals Student Media

The student news site of George Rogers Clark High School

Smoke Signals Student Media

Three GRC grads earn the distinction of Eagle Scout

Eagle Scouts and recent GRC graduates Joshua McCoy, Dylan Coomer, John Gamble

Three long-time friends and May GRC graduates earned the coveted distinction of Eagle Scout.

Congratulations to Dylan Coomer, John Gamble, and Joshua McCoy.

Earning the challenging and highly regarded rank of Eagle Scout is not for the weak. It represents not only a high level of leadership, but outdoor skills, perseverance, and service to community.

We asked the three young men to reflect on this high honor.

Dylan Coomer

“It really means a lot to me to becoming an Eagle Scout because it has been something that I have been trying to achieve for a long time now. It means a lot to me because scouting has taught me so many valuable lessons and skills while on my path to Eagle that I don’t think I could have gotten anywhere else.”

Dylan’s Eagle Scout Project benefited the George Rogers Clark Marching Band. As part of the marching band show, props are utilized that are built on scaffolding. Dylan noticed over time that the wheels on the scaffolding were very worn. The scaffolding must be moved around during the show by the band members. Due to the worn wheels becoming more difficult to move, it was becoming a safety risk to both students and adults.

His project was to replace the scaffolding wheels to improve the safety for his current band members and future band members. Dylan partnered with Lowes of Winchester who donated the wheels. He organized a group of volunteers including both Scouts and Band members, conducted a safety and training session, and led a successful project to the delight of everyone involved. “The ease of maneuverability of the new wheels made a lasting impact for the current year’s show and will have an impact for future years,” Dylan said.

John Gamble

“It is an incredible honor to finally reach this incredible achievement of Eagle Scout. It took years of hard work and dedication, but was definitely worth it. The title of Eagle scout is not one reached easily. Many do commit and push through the challenges. Like a bald eagle, Eagle Scout are rare, but when found, are always a prime specimen. This award will forever remind me of the challenges and hardships I can overcome as I move into new chapters of my life.”

John’s project benefited the GRC Marching Band. John explains:

“The GRC band travels all over the state, and sometimes outside of it, to compete in KMEA marching competitions. We transport our uniforms to every competition in 7 large rolling boxes. We have used the same 7 boxes for over 50 years. Over time these boxes have become worn down, damaged, and falling apart in some cases. I took on the challenge to refurbish, improve, and even add another box. This task was not easy, with the project taking over 300 hours of manual labor alone, not including planning, fundraising, and coordination of work days with volunteers.

“We began by stripping the boxes down to the bare wood and components — sanding every surface and removing hinges, handles, wheels, bars, locks, and decals. Myself, family, friends, and volunteers spent days working on this step. The next step was to rebuild these boxes one by one — installing new metal bars to hold the uniforms, stronger hinges, new handles, better wheels, new paint, decals, corner guards, and adding another box in order to fit more uniforms for our growing marching program. Along with that, I took the initiative to upgrade the boxes. I created smaller boxes which attach on top of the newly refurbished boxes in order to hold our marching shoes. This greatly decreases the chances of students losing shoes. I also installed LED lighting in both the main box and the shoe box in order to ease the use at night. No more fumbling in the dark trying to find the right uniform.”

Joshua McCoy

“For me, it’s the culmination of so many years of work and service, alongside my best friends. It means a lot to me, because of how many people I’ve seen earn it before me, and for me to end up receiving it myself.”

Josh’s project was a food drive/volunteer session to benefit God’s Pantry Food Bank in Lexington. “I organized a food drive at Baker Intermediate School, and targeted food drives throughout Winchester’s neighborhoods. I ended up collecting almost 1,000 pounds of food, and took a volunteer crew to God’s Pantry to assist them in sorting their inbound donations for distribution to their member food banks.”

Congratulations to these young men, who have been close friends since elementary school and who are all four-year members of the GRC Band.

John, Josh and Dylan


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