Local boys earn Eagle Scout rank

Star Staff Writer

Spotted Eagle Recreation Area in Miles City is the beneficiary of some good work by two Eagle Scouts and several helpers.

Adam Oster, 17, and Charlie Swogger, 14, both earned their Eagle Scout rank and were honored at a ceremony last Sunday at Grace Bible Church.

As part of their requirements, among others, is a service project. Oster’s project included six picnic tables and a barbecue grill at Spotted Eagle.

“There wasn’t any special reason for it,” Oster said. “It just seemed like a good project.”

Swogger’s was to refurbish the historical sign that depicts the “Surrender of the Sioux.” They were helped by at least a dozen other Boy Scouts in completing their projects.

Oster, a senior at Custer County District High School, joined the Tiger Cub Scouts a dozen years ago while living in Tennessee. He had already reached the rank of Life, the sixth-highest level in Boy Scouts and the last before earning the Eagle Scout honor.

“It means a lot,” Oster said. “It’s a big achievement. Not many get it.”

Swogger agreed, also saying it “means a lot.”

“I look up to Eagle Scouts a lot,” he said, adding, “I’m so young to get it.”

Oster, the son of Miles City KOA Campground owners Kevin and Jeanette Oster, has some fond memories, especially of his days in Tennessee.

“Scouting was really growing in Tennessee,” he said. “It was the only state where it was (growing) and it was really a pleasure to be part of it.”

Oster also has a sister Molly, a sophomore at CCDHS.

Being a member of the Scouts organization certainly had its perks. One of

Oster’s favorites as a youngster was a trip on a sailboat out of the Florida Keys.

“I enjoyed most of it,”Oster said. “The camping trips were my favorite.”

Oster also has his future mapped out. He plans to study computer science in college.

“I’m not sure where yet, but I hope to be a computers forensics investigator,” he said. “It’s mainly fighting cyber crime.”

Swogger, one of seven children of Dave and Shirley Swogger, has enjoyed going through the ranks. He recalls archery at Matthews Recreation Area, visits from firefighters (along with a truck) and trips to Wyoming and across Montana.

“It was a good thing to get into,” Swogger said, referring to Scouts. “It gives you extra skills. We’re lucky to get so many volunteers to help us.”

Swogger has three brothers — Taylor and Mikey in Miles City, and Logan, a weapons officer on a destroyer in the U.S. Navy. His three sisters are Ellen Lauchnor, an assistant professor at Montana State; Emily Reaves, a homemaker, in Boise, Idaho; and Laura Long, a pediatric psychiatrist in Alaska.

Swogger, a freshman at CCDHS, is already planning his future.

“I’d like to be a missionary, maybe in the medical field,” he said. “I like helping people and I want to give back.”

Sounds like Miles City has produced two more responsible citizens — both of whom can add Eagle Scout to their resume.

(Contact Abe Winter at starcity@midrivers.com or 406-234-0450.)