By Kate Klimesh,
Boy Scout Owen Tuveson of Houston, Minn., established a U.S. Flag repository in Houston to ensure proper flag disposal for his Eagle Scout project recently. The repository is located by the Houston branch of the Rushford State Bank and has already seen some steady activity. Tuveson is a senior at Houston High School and spent considerable time this summer on the project – when he wasn’t working at the local grocery store.
Tuveson joined Boy Scouts as soon as he was able in fourth grade, and joining with several of his friends made it even better.
“I was really interested in Boy Scouts due to all the trips and camps they had, and joining Troop 53 in Houston with all my friends, we just had so many adventures together, it’s been great. Now, there’s many of us trying to achieve our Eagle Scout status, since I was going to try also, I needed to figure out what I wanted to do for my project,” said Tuveson.
Tuveson noted he had seen the large number of retired flags coming in for the flag burning ceremony on Flag Day, and knew he wanted to somehow alleviate the overwhelming number of flags coming in such a short time.
“The mailbox-style flag repository was meant to be a relief to our Scout Master, who had all these flags dropped off at his house each year. He’s getting older, and this way, he’s not trying to move so many flags all at once. And this way, if you didn’t know any boy scouts to drop the flags off to, you can still dispose of them properly,” Tuveson explained.
The project needed an approved location, a repository, a slab foundation and custom signage. When the originally-planned mailbox was too damaged to use, Tuveson ordered a new mailbox and went to businesses, friends and community members to raise the funds needed to purchase it.
“We had two anonymous community donors who really helped push the donations to the goal, and when I discussed the project with the Rushford State Bank manager for placement – well, he has three Eagle Scouts in his family, so he was happy to help,” Tuveson added.
He did receive some assistance with the project from his fellow scouts with the foundation and installation, and project advice from his father, Chris Tuveson, and his grandfather, Paul Wiste.
Chris added, “I didn’t do scouts when I was his age, so I try to volunteer to help the troop as much as I can.”
Owen’s hope is that this can spark other scouts to replicate the project in their own communities.
Owen is now waiting for his Eagle Scout application to be scheduled with the Board of Review, where they will discuss the project, his volunteer hours and several letters of recommendation to determine if he’s met the requirements for the rank of Eagle Scout. As his senior year starts, he will be staying busy with football, IATA assistance and trap shooting in the spring.
“I’m basically involved in everything I can,” Owen stated.
But he will be very ready for his review once it’s scheduled. And, the residents of Houston and the surrounding community will have an always-at-the-ready site for retired flag disposal in their community, thanks to him.