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Published: Tuesday, 7/16/2013

Eagle Scout earns all 135 merit badges

Michigan youth reaches milestone just after his 14th birthday

ASSOCIATED PRESS
John Trecha, 14, said after he earned his first merit badge he set a goal of at least 100. He eventually went on to earn every badge the Boy Scouts offer. John Trecha, 14, said after he earned his first merit badge he set a goal of at least 100. He eventually went on to earn every badge the Boy Scouts offer.
FLINT (MICH.) JOURNAL Enlarge

FENTON, Mich. — It’s one thing to make Eagle Scout, but John Trecha didn’t stop there.

Young Trecha earned all 135 merit badges in the Boy Scouts by a month after he turned 14, according to the Flint Journal. A Scout must earn 21 badges to reach the highest rank of Eagle Scout.

“The boys definitely have to be dedicated to do that,” Ann Norris of Boy Scouts Michigan Crossroads Council’s Water and Woods Field Service Council told the newspaper.

Young Trecha’s trek toward the milestone started after he earned his first badge. He then told his father, Jeff Trecha, that he wanted to earn at least 100.

When he hit 100, John Trecha was not satisfied.

“I wanted to earn them all,” he said.

Young Trecha started as a Cub Scout in 2006.

“I was so scared,” he said. “No one from my class was in my Tiger Cub [troop].”

The fear eventually went away but not his quest for merit badges. He especially enjoyed earning the cinematography badge, which required making a 5-minute, stop-motion movie.

“It was my favorite merit badge,” the Trecha youth said.

He earned about 50 badges a year.

“He came home and for two and a half years, he would spend a half hour every day and an hour or two on weekends dedicated to at least five or six [merit badges] at a time,” his father said.

His son stayed five days and four nights on a 30-mile backpacking trip to earn one badge. He grew a garden for one and raised tree frogs for another.

Badges for medicine and scuba diving were the most difficult to earn.

He plans to continue in Boy Scouts even if there are no more badges to earn.

“I’m still pretty Scout-busy,” he said. “I enjoy being a leader and getting things accomplished.”



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