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Centennial Eagle Scout - Frank Mahan

Scouting Gave Meaning to Life 

As Interviewed by Ed Rogers for Alamo Area BSA: August 12, 2009

Name: FRANK MAHAN, DOB June 22, 1929, born and raised in San Antonio, Shavano Park 45 years, Trinity University graduate 1951, active churchman, Korean war Army Vet, career photographer/writer in mapping/aerial photography for USGS, also Insurance company of North America and USAA. 

Eagle: Awarded October 11, 1944, Troop 35, chartered thru First Evangelical Church

Tell me about how you first become involved in Scouting? All of my friends hunted and fished, five of us joined the troop together, and we all made Eagle.

What is your favorite memory/ summer camp story from your days as a youth in Scouting?

Camaraderie of my fellow scouts. We grew up together, we did a canoe trip on the Guadalupe River from hwy 281 all the way to Sattler...we killed lots of snakes along the way. I remember Indian Creek and the Order of the Arrow initiation, that night being all by myself, the first time I’d done that.

Who was your Scoutmaster and what was your impression of him? Mr. Holdermann, he was a go- to-guy, trustworthy individual who cared a lot about everybody. All of our leadership was good!

What Scouting skill/merit badge was the most difficult for you to learn/master? Don’t remember any tough ones, but, I enjoyed shooting and canoeing.

What would be your message to young Scouts today? The things that matter to me, I think of the morality, the Oath and that sort of thing. I think that along with the skills really has provided me with a means of living that I would not have had. It makes life understandable, everything works together. Scouting gave meaning to life.

How did Scouting change your/ your family life? Dad was an outdoor, farm person, so he helped me in the outdoors with hunting. Dad taught me that when you shake someone’s hand, it’s your bond! Your word’s important. I always want to do something the best way. Scouting gave me that!

What did becoming an Eagle Scout mean to you during your youth/ as an adult? I can still recite the Scout Oath and Law. It was an honor, a privilege. We all worked together to achieve Eagle Scout. You were exposed to so many different things, it fostered curiosity and learning, and forming your work habits.

What legacy of your Scouting experience would you like to have others to remember you by? I think maybe Be Prepared! That was drilled into us no matter what you were doing. Mindset to plan ahead, and make the most of what you have. Trustworthy. 

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