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Life and Arts

3 members of JPL Boy Scout Troop 509 are new Eagle Scouts

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Sebastian Houseknecht, left, Owen Serricchio and Stefan Markarian of Boy Scout Troop 509 have achieved the rank of Eagle Scout.
(Courtesy of Belle n Beau Photography)

A court of honor was held in von Karman Auditorium at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory on April 19 to celebrate the work of JPL Boy Scout Troop 509’s most recent teens to achieve the rank of Eagle Scout.

The young men feted last week were Sebastian Houseknecht, Stefan Markarian and Owen Serricchio. The Scoutmaster of their troop is Dr. Martin Kast.

Known for its outdoor activities, Troop 509 was established in 1952 and currently has more than 100 members.

The following brief summaries of the new Eagle Scouts’ experiences along their Boy Scout path were taken from information provided by Troop 509 officials:

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Sebastian Houseknecht is a 17-year-old senior at Redondo Union High School, who previously studied at La Cañada High School. He began scouting in fourth grade as a Cub Scout. Initially a member of Calabasas Troop 127, and then Troop 509 in La Cañada, he earned 110 merit badges and 16 palms and served as troop guide. His outings included backpacking at Philmont Scout Ranch in New Mexico, and sailing and snorkeling at Sea Base in the Florida Keys.

Houseknecht’s Eagle leadership service project was to build dog beds and install drought-resistant landscaping at the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals in Hawthorne.

Stefan Markarian, 18, is a senior at La Cañada High School. He began scouting in third grade as a Cub Scout in Pack 515 at Palm Crest Elementary. As a member of Boy Scout Troop 509, he earned 29 merit badges and one palm and served as troop guide. His outings included climbing Mt. Whitney, backpacking at Philmont Scout Ranch in New Mexico, and sailing and scuba diving off the British Virgin Islands.

Markarian’s Eagle project was to construct seating logs from tree stumps for Descanso Gardens.

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Owen Serricchio, 18, is also a senior at La Cañada High School. He began scouting in fourth grade as a Cub Scout in Pack 515 at Palm Crest Elementary. As a Boy Scout with Troop 509, he earned 28 merit badges and one palm and served as patrol leader, troop guide and instructor. His outings included backpacking at Philmont Scout Ranch in New Mexico, and camping at Joshua Tree National Park.

Serricchio’s Eagle leadership service project was to improve the area around the bungalow at his high school’s track by painting the outside of the bungalow, including a school-colors “Spartans” splash, and building two picnic tables.


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