45 years of Troop 156 History
By: Trevor Dean
Troop 156 was founded by John Dyer-Hurdon. He began preparations in August of 1967, and after 6 months of preparations, and approval from various board members at Peace Lutheran Church the Troop was Chartered and Troop 156’s first meeting took place the first Monday in February 1968. Seven boys were enrolled in the Troop at this time. The Troop grew to 12 boys after 3 months and has been successfully growing in numbers ever since. At the Troops peak, there were 187 boys registered active. Currently in March of 2013 Troop 156 holds 50 active boys, and many of its to date: 114 Eagle Scouts return each year to support the Troop in various scouting activities.
Troop 156 met at Peace Lutheran Church for three years, until they outgrew the meeting room. The meetings were then transferred over to Morgan Elementary Gym in 1971. The Troop currently holds Troop Meeting at Morgan Elementary and utilizes Peace Lutheran Church for various other Scout related functions and meetings.
Troop 156's Chartering Organization changed in January 2014 to North Macomb Sportsman’s Club. With the constant growth of the Troop, this allowed an opportunity to provide the boys with new program growth, and expansion in their equipment and various other positive aspects to scouting. The relationship with the previous Chartering Organization Peace Lutheran Church still holds dear to Troop 156 as they have been there since the inception of the Troop 156 family. They will continue their relationship to ensure the Reverent aspect of scouting continues.
Troop 156 prides itself on service to the community. The most important service we provide is to our current Chartering Organization, North Macomb Sportsman’s Club, where the Troop makes themselves available whenever there is a need. It also continues to provide service to their previous Chartering Organization Peace Lutheran Church.
Tradition is important to those involved in Troop 156. The values of the scouting program are held dear to each individual members heart. We have a strong camping tradition and continually challenge young scouts to improve their scouting skills.
Some Highlights of Troop 156 from 1968-2014
- Troop 156 has had 11 Scoutmasters throughout its history: John Dyer Hurdon(Founder), Roger Ackerman, Charles Kingsley, Charles Merrick, Dennis Brown, Bill Vasilides, Thom Foxlee, Bill Vasilides (2nd term), Don Mooty, Robert Finta, Richard Mckinnon, Ed van Amstel.
- Attended as a Troop, the dedication of Lost Lake Scout Reservation, Richard Austin was the featured Speaker.
- Marched in the Memorial Day Parade in Dundalk, Maryland
- Troop 156 cited as Youth Conservationist of the Year by Michigan Conservation Club. It was presented by Governor Milliken
- Received the first of only two Hornaday Unit Awards for Conservation
- Receiving during the Bi-Centennial, the Freedoms Foundation Plaque for the Troops bicentennial efforts from the Freedoms Foundation at Valley Forge, Penn.
- Visit New York City for the Tall Ships
- Had a Drum and Bugle Corp., which marched and played the entire 9 miles to retrace the steps of the Action Militia who marched to engage the British at Concord Bridge.
- Visiting the Plymouth Plantation
- Attended the 1973 Jamboree in Butler, PA (Moraine State Park) as a Troop. This was the only Jamboree before or since that registered Troops could attend as a register Troop. 46 boys attended and 8 adults.
- Numerous Canoe Trips and Hikes throughout Michigan
- High Adventure Trips to Philmont Scout Reservation (New Mexico), Northern Tier(Minnesota), Seabase (Bahamas), Isle Royale
- Summer Camp Trips in Michigan, Wisconsin, Illinois, Ohio, and Pennsylvania - Troop 156 attends Summer Camp every year.
- Trips to Haliburton Scout Reserve (Canada),
- Boys attended 100 Year Jamboree in contingent Troops, and Troop 156 had a group attend the 100-year Jamboree as visitors, where they also toured Washington D.C, visited Gettysburg and Mt. Vernon.
- Canadian Jamboree in Dorchester, (Ontario, Canada)
- White Water Rafting Trip in Virginia
- Brad Lichota, Eagle Scout of Troop 156, was appointed 2010 Order of the Arrow National Chief. Traveled the world as a voice of scouting and presented the Annual Charter to the President of the United States.
- July 2014 Troop 156 attended the first Jamboree at the High Adventure Base Bechtel The Summit.
Troop 156 has presented its youth with an amazing amount of outdoor experiences throughout the United States and Canada. It is a time-honored tradition to camp each and every month of the year. The boys of Troop 156 have encountered many experiences in all types of weather, and obstacles. These experiences are what allows the youth in our troop to grow into upstanding citizens where ever their lives may take them.
As Scoutmasters come and go each one touches the lives of so many young men. They have given these young men experiences they otherwise would most likely never have encountered. We at Troop 156 honor tradition, and hope these traditions are carried on over the next 100 years in Troop 156.
Founder John Dyer-Hurdon currently still remains registered with Troop 156 and visits on occasion. He is an honorary member whom we will forever be grateful that took the time to get this Troop up and running and is still involved to see its legacy continue.