WESTBROOK, Minnesota (STPNS) -- Grant Harrell has earned the distinguished rank of Eagle Scout, the highest rank which can be bestowed upon a Scout, and takes many years to earn.  He is a member of Troop 609, Andover, MN, sponsored by the Anoka Rotary.  Only a small percentage of those who start scouting ever make it to Eagle, and Grant is one of those few. There are many tasks to complete to earn this rank, one of which is to complete a project to help the community.  A Scout is required to earn 21 Merit Badges to earn his Eagle Rank.  There are over 100 Merit Badges to choose from.  Earning a Merit Badge shows that a scout has achieved some proficiency in a given subject.  Grant has also achieved something few Eagles ever achieve; he has earned every Merit Badge that he was eligible to earn (140).

    Grant designed and completed a project working with the DNR, geared toward helping our youth. Grant put together a team and manufactured 50 field desks, to be used by elementary students, while learning in the outdoors, about our environment. These desks were donated to Jefferson Elementary School and accepted in a ceremony by the first grade December 2014.

    On his journey to Eagle, Grant had many opportunities to learn new things, make new acquaintances, and have adventures. These opportunities included, Merit Badges, Jamborees, and High Adventure camps.

    A Jamboree is the Boy Scouts of America's largest gathering which takes place every few years.  This event is held for approximately a week and a half and offers many activities for youth participants and the 300,000 members of the general public who visit it.  Grant participated in 2, the 2010 jamboree located in Fort A.P. Hill, Virginia, and the 2013 jamboree held at The Summit: Bechtel Family National Scout Reserve in Mount Hope, West Virginia. These Jamborees are attended by scouts from all over the U.S. with Scouts from other countries participating also.

    Scouting has many high adventure camps for its older youth. Grant had the opportunity to go to Sea Base in the Florida Keys for a week long adventure.  He lived for a week on a desert island, with his crew of 8.  From this island they kayaked in bioluminescent algae in the middle of the night, went deep sea fishing, Day and night snorkeling, shark fishing, a service project and more.

    Merit Badges give the scout an opportunity to challenge themselves, to learn and experience new things. While earning backpacking merit badge, Grant had the opportunity to hike across the Superstition Wilderness area in Arizona. Starting at a Mountain Pass, Grant and his crew hiked for 5 days to their pick up point at the other side of the wilderness area, they carried everything they needed for this trek on their backs.     During their trek they found native American dwellings over 600 years old, negotiated a route through canyons without established trails, packed out trash found near the trail head, and came across a 6 foot Mojave rattlesnake in their path.

    During Grant's scouting experience he gave back to scouting in many ways, including teaching at scout camps, and volunteering as a rope worker at the Double Dog Dare fundraisers.  As staff member at Tomahawk Scout Reservation in Wisconsin, he worked there in a variety of capacities, including teaching skills and as a life guard.  At the Double Dog Dare Fundraiser Annual Events, he instructed and belayed participants repelling down skyscrapers in downtown St. Paul and Minneapolis.

    Grant is currently an Engineering Student at the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology in Rapid City South Dakota.

    Grant is the son of John and Tracy (Larson) Harrell and the grandson of Gene and Ramona Larson, Westbrook.