Eagle Scouts…”Freedom is not Free…” Learning the Value of Leadership Early in Life…

by | Jul 12, 2014


Bryan Ritchey… recently finished his freshman year at Barat Academy, where he played on the Boys’ Varsity Soccer and Junior Varsity Golf teams, as well as participated in the Spring Musical. Bryan crossed over into Boy Scouts in 2010. He has held several leadership positions throughout his scouting career.


Bryan Ritchey, Veterans Memorial “Honoring Heroes” Project…Dardenne Prairie, Missouri.  Click photo for larger view.


Freedom is not free…  Quote from this website article by Bryan Ritchey, Eagle Scout, Boy Scott Troop #984…

“Eagle Scout represents the culmination of the Boy Scouts’ finest achievements. The focus is on service and leadership, with the most important and well-known requirement being to “plan, develop and give leadership to others in a service project helpful to any religious institution, any school or your community.” To put it simply, the Eagle Scout rank provides the opportunity to give back to others.”


I don’t know Bryan Ritchey, but feel very proud of him and other young men and women who learn early about the sacrifice of protecting the freedoms we enjoy as Americans.  I am also a big fan of programs that teach kids leadership and community service early in life.  Giving back and making a difference for others is a heartfelt payment for all the blessings and gifts we receive over a lifetime.  Besides, there is no other work I can think of that is more rewarding than community service…

Bryan Ritchey sets an example of learning about leadership early in life through working with the Boy Scouts of America.  If there is one thing kids need to learn and grasp as early as possible, it is to “step up and lead.”  America will always be short changed when it comes to leadership development and skills.  Future leaders in both private and public enterprise are very critical to solving the problems and challenges of our time.  In my experience, young people and even adults shy away from taking on leadership roles for fear of failure or inability to achieve what often appears to be a monumental task.

Leadership is learned and skills are acquired when taking the first big step of accepting a leadership responsibility.   The risk is certainly a factor for anyone willing to step up and lead.  But the rewards are far greater when we achieve big goals that require a strong team and a great leader.  Bryan Ritchey has proven as a young adult in his own community that he can make a difference as a leader.  You can do it too…

Steve Sparks, Author, My Journey of Healing in Life After Trauma, Part 1 and Reconciliation: A Son’s Story… Click the highlighted text for my author page…

About the author

Steve Sparks is a retired information technology sales and marketing executive with over 35 years of industry experience, including a Bachelors’ in Management from St. Mary’s College. His creative outlet is as a non-fiction author, writing about his roots as a post-WWII US Navy military child growing up in the 1950s-1960s.
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