This is the second day of our Twelve Days of a Scout Christmas. For the next eleven days you will find inspiring Christmas messages of Scouts giving the gift of living the Scout Oath and Law. Countdown to Christmas with us as you read these daily messages of Scouts being trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean and reverent.

The second day of Scout Christmas reminds a Scout to be loyal. A Scout is true to his family, friends, Scout leaders, school, and nation. To be loyal is to be faithful. The Christmas story is full of loyalty and faithfulness. Joseph remained loyal to Mary when she told him her news. The wise men remained loyal to Christ and didn’t report back to Herod. And now we are reminded to remain loyal to the precepts Christ taught throughout His life.

There are many inspiring stories of Scouts showing loyalty to their friends, leaders, communities, and God. This story from Michael S. Malone’s book, Running Toward Dangershows the kind of loyalty that helped a boy save his friend, even when it may have seemed hopeless:

January 1978: First Class Scout Duane Masonheimer and his friend Tracy Tacker, both 14, were skiing near Waterhall Township, Pennsylvania. Tracy raced ahead down a 50-foot hill and, unknowingly, set off an avalanche. At the top of the hill, Duane could only look down and watch as his friend disappeared under the pile of rolling snow.

The instant the slide stopped, he raced down in search of his buried friend. But there was no sign—the fresh snow had covered any track or mark. Duane continued his desperate search until he spotted a tiny movement. It was Tracy’s fingers just above the surface of the snow.

Rushing over, Duane began to dig with his bare hands, exposing first Tracy’s hand, then arm, and finally his head. By now, Duane’s hands were starting to freeze. He kept digging, until he exposed his friend’s face. Tracy was still alive. Unable to work his hands anymore, Duane made sure his friend was conscious and breathing—then ran to Tracy’s nearby house and got help. Tracy was soon pulled from his snowy tomb, unscathed.

Duane’s faithful search and perseverance saved his friend’s life. Boys’ Life writers were so impressed by Duane’s story that they featured him in the “Scouts in Action” series:

Buried by an Avalanche

The kind of loyalty Duane represented doesn’t easily fade, and this one moment has doubtless continued to impact his life. When The Morning Call announced the marriage of MaryAnn Holota to Duane Rudy Masonheimer in 1988, it listed Tracy Tacker as the best man.

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Maria Milligan
Has spent several years as a merit badge counselor, several summers as a waterfront director, and her whole life wishing she could do the Pinewood Derby with her 6 brothers. She joined the Utah National Parks Council as a Grant Writer to get her chance.

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