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Photos from the 2019 Reunion

 

Curtis S. Read Memorial Ceremony

By Robert “Bob” Johnson

‘40’s Era Chairman

 

This brief ceremony was conducted on the last night of each two week period at camp.  It can be modified to fit existing conditions and circumstances.  It was instituted as a memorial to Curtis S. Read, for whom the camp is named, and to perpetuate the story of how the camp was created.

In the dark, assembly sounds.  Scouts, pajama clad and ready for bed, line-up in formation.  A staff member relates the story:

"Curtis S. Read was very active in the beginning years of the Boy Scouts of America.  He became an Assistant Scoutmaster in the rapidly growing new organization.  As world events were leading up to World War I, Read entered the United States Navy.  He was commissioned as an Ensign and became a Navy Aviator.  He lost his life on February 27th, 1918, and was the first U.S. casualty in World War I.

Because of his dedication to the Boy Scouts, his mother, Mrs. William A. Read, donated thirty acres on Long Pond in Mahopac, New York, for a camp in memory of her son.

Camp Curtis S. Read opened in 1920 on that site and served scouts there for twenty six years.  For the next two or so years, Camp Read had no home but found temporary quarters at Camp Waubeeka and at Camp Siwanoy.

In 1949 Camp Curtis S. Read was re-established near Brant Lake in the Adirondacks starting with four troop sites.  It grew and flourished in its new location to become the Curtis S. Read Scout Reservation, serving hundreds of scouts each year.

Tonight we are here to honor Curtis S. Read, Assistant Scoutmaster and Naval Officer, in whose memory this camp was founded."

A lighted lantern is raised to the top of the flag pole. As the bugler sounds Taps, it is lowered to half-staff where it will remain through the night.  Upon dismissal, you will return to your quarters and, on your Scout’s Honor, you will maintain silence until morning.