By Michael Buhler
Anthony Wilkerson’s grandfather and great-grandfather both served their country as members of the United States Navy. When it came time for the Goddard High School student to do his Eagle Scout project, the choice was obvious – bring a veterans’ memorial to Goddard.
“Because of my grandfather’s and great-grandfather’s dedication – and the dedication I have seen through several other veterans – I felt it was necessary for Goddard to recognize what they did for us,” Wilkerson said.
The memorial was dedicated on Aug. 5 and is located on Santa Fe St. in Goddard. According to Wilkerson, the memorial took over 200 man-hours and three pallets of concrete to complete. He spent approximately one year planning and working on the project. However, he did get help in at least one area.
“What started out looking like a $3,000 project turned into a $700 project because of all the donations I received,” Wilkerson said.
Wilkerson, who will be a senior at Goddard High this fall, started as a Cub Scout in first grade and has been in Boy Scouts with Troop 776 for almost seven years now. However, his inspiration to become a Scout came from an unlikely source.
“I was inspired because of my sister’s dedication in Girl Scouts,” Wilkerson said. “I had got to see how much fun she had and knew I wanted to join Boy Scouts right away.”
Even though Wilkerson has reached the pinnacle of Boy Scouts as an Eagle Scout, he does not plan to rest on his laurels. He plans to stay active in scouting as an adult and said that he wasnt s to get involved with Venturing, a co-ed branch of scouting for ages 14-21. Wilkerson also plans to attend college and major in vocal music education, with the goal of one day becoming a high school choir director.
For now, Wilkerson is happy to see his hard work pay off and bring some recognition to those who served.
“I’m really happy to see the project in Goddard, especially in the location that it is in right now because it will get seen during future Fall Festivals and events like National Night Out,” Wilkerson said. “Hopefully people will remember to thank a veteran.”