LEWISBURG — Gary and Barbara Baylor were recognized Thursday night for pursuits which benefit the community.

The couple was jointly presented the 2019 Distinguished Citizen Award of the Susquehanna Council of the Boy Scouts of America with a reception at La Primavera Ristorante.

Ethel Snook, past council president, cited Gary’s involvement with their church. She noted that an ADA compliant entrance was needed at their church at one time, as well as consolidated offices, a new organ and a fix for a flood-prone basement.

“They assigned Gary Baylor to update and renovate,” Snook said. “It cost over $1 million. Now we have a beautiful church.”

Gary and the Baylor family was also thanked for fixing the pool at Camp Karoondinha, the Millmont-based Scout camp. It was in poor condition, Snook said, so she asked if something could be done.

“I was at home,” Snook remembered. “The doorbell rang. I went to the doorbell and there stood Gary with checks from the whole Baylor family to renovate and put in a whole new pool up at camp.”

Snook cited Barbara for her leadership in the Lewisburg Area Alumni Association, her devotion to the Sigma Alpha Iota music fraternity for women, service as a Brownie, Girl Scout and Den Mother and numerous volunteer credits.

Gary, long associated with Country Cupboard and other local development, was humbled by the honor.

“I have many pleasant memories of my years in Scouting,” he said. “Weekend campouts, weeks of summer camp at Camp Karoondinha, hikes along country roads, a cross-country trip by train to a National Jamboree in Colorado and many more.”

Gary called Scouting a life-building activity which added fun to the learning of important skills. He also recalled at age 22 being convinced by Snook to be a Cub Scout master at Selinsgrove church.

Barbara added her parents taught her to be devoted to her community.

“I have several passions that motivate me,” she said. “Education, reading and music. And that is where I choose to volunteer my time.”

Both Baylors also received individual salutations.

Gary, an Eagle Scout, Brotherhood Member of the Order of the Arrow and Explorer, was granted a National Outstanding Eagle Scout Award.

Robert Dluge, current council president and past honoree, said the award recognizes an Eagle Scout who demonstrate outstanding achievement at the local, state or regional level. He noted only two previous Eagle Scouts from the area had been granted the honor. Gary earned his Eagle Scout rank Jan. 8, 1967 as a member of Boy Scout Troop 509.

Sabra Karr, DCA committee member, presented Barbara a BSA North Star Award. Karr noted the award is presented by the council on behalf of the national Court of Honor and is the highest award with may be presented to a non-registered volunteer for contribution to local youth.

Rep. Lynda Schlegel-Culver (R-108) presented acknowledgements on behalf of Rep. David Rowe (R-85), Rep. Garth Everett (R-84) and Congressman Fred Keller (R-Pa., 12).

Dluge closed the proceedings by observing that scouting changed in the past year with the introduction of female members.

“We currently have seven all-female BSA troops and 19 Family Cub packs with boys and girls within our council,” he added. “Currently we serve 151 female youths in addition to the scouts.”

The Susquehanna Council, he said, has two female Scouts who received Silver Antelope and Silver Buffalo awards in the last year. Dluge also estimated that 40% of the 41,000 attendees at the most recent World Jamboree were female.

Staff writer Matt Farrand can be reached at 570-742-9671 and via email at matt@standard-journal.com.

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