Gonzales Boy Scout earns Eagle Scout rank

Brandie Richardson
Eric Bascom, Jeremy Guy, Jake Babin, Jace Babin, and Young Men’s Church leader George “Buster” Hughes

Jake Babin of Gonzales is one of the most recent men to earn the distinguished title of Eagle Scout, a program of the Boy Scouts of America. Eagle Scout is the highest achievement and rank attainable in the Boy Scouts.

The process to earn the rank is lengthy and takes years to earn, which is why only about four percent of scouts are ever awarded this rank. Requirements include earning a minimum of 21 merit badges, which includes camping, emergency preparedness, environmental science, first aid, and citizenship in the world, and demonstrating Scout Spirit through an extensive project that shows leadership and community service.

Babin chose to make care packages for foster children as his Eagle Scout project. He made drawstring backpacks filled with items such as toiletries, stuffed animals, t-shirts and underwear. With help from members of his troop and Valerie Whittom, Courtney Richardson, and Melinda Hall, who donated material and sewed the bags, he was able to complete the project in two weekends.

Once completed, the bags were given to Karen Washington of the Department of Children and Services in Gonzales.

"This was a great experience to be able to help out children that are taken from their homes and to have something of their own," he said. "My project gave me and my troop a sense of accomplishment in helping out the Gonzales community."

By earning the rank of Eagle Scout, he joined an esteemed group of men who also hold the achievement such as Astronaut Neil Armstrong, Walmart founder Sam Walton, Former President Gerald R. Ford and Film Director Steven Spielberg.

The Eagle Charge and award was presented by his uncle, Lew Winter from Phoenix, Az., during a ceremony held on Jan. 21 at The Church of Jesus Chirst of Latter-day Saints. Babin's advocates were his Young Men’s Church leader George “Buster” Hughes, his older brother and Eagle Scout Jace Babin and his Cub Scout Leader Jeremy Guy.

He is the son of Norm and Monica Forbes Sonnie of Gonzales and Jaime Babin of Baton Rouge, grandson of George and Dorothy Forbes of Pride and Barbara Babin, and the late Joseph Babin, Jr. of Baton Rouge.

Babin is a graduate of East Ascension High School, where he was an active member of the marching and concert bands. He is currently a freshman at Southeastern Louisiana University.