Local Boy Scouts to march in D.C. - Philadelphia News

January 16, 2009 2:58:31 PM PST
A local Boy Scout troop will not only witness history on Inauguration Day. They'll be apart of it marching right in front of President-Elect Barack Obama in the Inaugural Parade.After Barack Obama's election, Boy Scout Troop 358 in Germantown, one of the oldest historically African American troops in the nation, set its sights on a goal: marching in Obama's Inaugural parade.

But the competition was stiff: they were one of 1400 applications.

"We actually applied about one week after Barack Obama was elected, we thought there was no chance we would probably get picked," scoutmaster Brian Wallace said.

But in mid-December the scoutmaster learned that January 20th will be no ordinary day for his scouts.

"I was actually sitting in my parents' house and I jumped up and down sort of like a little boy with excitement because I knew it was a chance of a lifetime," Wallace said.

His kids were the ones screaming and jumping when he told them the news at the next scout meeting.

"I feel so rejoiceful; this is the biggest opportunity we will be getting to be part of history," Karl Braxton said.

"It was really big, I can't believe that," Christopher Logan said.

Troop 358 doesn't know why it was chosen, but it assumes it has to do with its 55 years of achievement including 13 young men becoming Eagle Scouts in one year alone.

Just as excited as the scouts are their parents, who say nothing could inspire their sons like looking into Barack Obama's face as they march past him.

"I think this is an opportunity of a lifetime. It gives them a lot of hope in their endeavors, in their life, that they know they can do anything that their minds to do," Kevin Braxton said.

For now, their young minds are set on a proud, spirited march into history.

Click here to get the latest Philadelphia news and headlines from across the Delaware and Lehigh valleys.