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Even if it means crawling up a steep hill, “he does what he has to do. He’s never shied away from walking in the woods,” Sparks said.
Persistence is something that Bill Anderl, Spragg’s first scoutmaster, remembers about him, too.
They were reunited a couple of years ago when Anderl agreed to mentor a special-needs Scout on the Eagle process, not knowing who it was.
Anderl, who is an Eagle himself, said it’s been rewarding to see Spragg take early Scout teachings to heart.
“David was always front row and center, always asking questions,” Anderl said. “So you knew his enthusiasm was really great.”
His fellow Scouts “are looking up to him as a role model and they’re thinking about achieving things they hadn’t dreamed of before,” Anderl said.
Although Spragg has limited mobility, using a walker to get around on foot, Anderl said he is proof that “you can find a way if you have the will. I think that’s David’s motto.”
Spragg isn’t likely to stop at Eagle; he is already thinking about the “Palms,” or optional badges representing ongoing enrichment.
He also hopes to one day be a scoutmaster himself. “I want to work with parents and kids who want to be in scouting, on their goals and desires,” he said.
Anna Pratt is a Minneapolis freelance writer.