By Kyle Piper, 2014 NE Region Chief
I’ve just returned from the adventure of a lifetime! This past weekend, the Northeast Region Key Three travelled to visit our brothers in Black Eagle lodge and the members of the Transatlantic Council during their camporee commemorating the 70th anniversary of the D-Day invasion. Activities kicked off from the moment we arrived on Friday with a visit from the BSA National Leadership to each campsite. As evening fell, I caught up with ceremonialists from Black Eagle to conduct Vigil Honor Call-Outs late into the night.
The next morning, the NER contingent attended the Prayer for Peace service held in the Bayeaux cathedral.Scouts from across the globe gathered to reaffirm our dedication to bringing peace through our words and actions. After the service, participants returned to the Omaha Beach for the campfire program. I was able to participate in a Webelos Crossover ceremony, one of my personal highlights from the entire experience. Following the campfire was a multi-media presentation highlighting the memorial on Omaha Beach for those who fell during the D-Day invasion. After the inspirational show, it was time to head back for dinner and fireworks on the beach!
Morning rose and Scouts made their way to the American Cemetery Colleville Sur Mer for the final activity of the camporee. Keynote speakers addressed the Scouts before flowers were laid upon gravestones throughout the cemetery. It was truly an honor to be present for this solemn occasion.
Before heading home, I was able to take a quick tour around Paris to see some of the most famous landmarks including the Eiffel Tower, the home of Voltaire, the Louvre and Pont de l'Archevêché to name a few. I even attended my first Catholic mass at Notre Dame! To see pictures of these landmarks is one matter, but to be in Paris and experience the sights and sounds of this historic city is an experience all its own.
I couldn’t have asked for a better trip. This experience will always be one of my most cherished memories. Thanks to Mark Chilutti and Brian Gray for traveling along with me, and to the Transatlantic Council and Black Eagle Lodge for their hospitality!