Westchester Boy Scout Troop 915 members Raymond Joel Garcia and David Grant Manes will be honored with the Eagle Scout Award, scouting’s highest honor, at a special Eagle Scout Court of Honor Sunday, July 29th.
The ceremony is scheduled at 3 p.m. at the Knights of Columbus hall, 8049 Manchester Ave. in Playa del Rey.
Westchester Troop 915 is led by scoutmaster Joe Apodaca and chartered to Our Savior Lutheran Church.
Garcia and Manes had to earn 21 merit badges, serve as a leader in their troop and complete a major community service project in order to earn the Eagle Scout Award.
Garcia’s service project took place at the Veterans Administration (VA) Los Angeles National Cemetery in Westwood in March. Leading 18 scouts and potential scouts, and over 20 adults, Garcia restored the planters in front of two of the buildings on the property where more than 85,000 veterans are laid to rest.
The project included making a border for the area and planting new vegetation such as white iceberg roses, society garlic plants and begonias.
Garcia also directed the beautification of the Woman’s Memorial at the south side of the more-than 114-acre property. The once-barren memorial is now filled with an assortment of geraniums.
Garcia and his fellow scouts returned to the Veterans Administration property on Memorial Day to place flags at each of the markers for the fallen soldiers.
Westport Heights Elementary School was the site of Manes’ community service project. With the help of Bobbie Blake, a fourth-grade teacher at the school, Manes planned, designed and painted a large mural in the Youth Garden.
The mural added a bright addition to what was a large long block cinder wall, troop leaders said. The painting included flowers, butterflies, trees and a pumpkin patch.
Manes worked with over 35 people, friends, scouts and adults to complete the beautification project at the elementary school.
Sixteen-year-old Garcia has served the troop as senior patrol leader and junior assistant scout master and also earned the Order of the Arrow recognition.
Garcia and his family moved to the Northern San Fernando Valley in 2004, but he remained active with his Westchester Troop despite the move.
He attends Los Angeles Baptist High School, where he will be starting his junior year in September. The scout is involved in his school’s basketball and baseball teams and he says he has aspirations of entering the culinary arts field.
Manes, a recent graduate of St. Monica Catholic High School in Santa Monica, has served as troop guide, assistant senior patrol leader and webmaster for his troop. At Saint Monica High, he was active in various organizations and was on the varsity soccer team. Manes is a surfer and makes his own skateboards.
He is active in other community service projects and has been a volunteer at the Santa Monica shelter. Manes will be entering Gonzaga University in the fall where he plans on pursuing a degree in business.