We are thrilled to announce two brothers from Vienna. Va. have earned all 135 merit badges currently offered by the Boy Scouts of America (BSA). In reaching this milestone, the brothers, Eric, 13, and Sean Grapin, 11, both Boy Scouts in Troop 345, chartered to Wesley United Methodist Church in Vienna, have achieved something that less than one percent of Scouts have ever done.
“What the Grapin brothers have accomplished is outstanding,” said Les Baron, CEO and Scout Executive of National Capital Area Council. “This achievement really speaks to their character and shows a tremendous amount of ambition and dedication. They set a great example, not just for Scouts, but for young people everywhere about how to work towards your vision.”
The brothers’ journey took them across 17 different states. They completed the final merit badge – Backpacking – on April 30, 2014. Later that same day, Eric sat for his Eagle Board of Review, the final step in becoming an Eagle Scout, the Boy Scout’s highest rank. The merit badge program give Scouts opportunities to learn about a wide variety of careers and avocations while developing new skills, learning new things, and increasing their self-confidence. For example, Eric’s favorite merit badge was Shotgun Shooting; for Sean it was Horsemanship. Other popular badges include First Aid, Citizenship in the Nation, Sustainability, and the newest merit badge, Digital Technology.
Now that they have accomplished their goal, Eric is looking forward to sharing his experience with other young Scouts by serving on staff at one of NCAC’s summer camps, and preparing for high school in the fall. Sean plans to enjoy his summer, do more horseback riding, and visit his grandparents in California.
Congratulation to Sean and Eric Grapin. They join the ranks of those Scouts who have earned all available merit badges. Since 2011, the number of merit badges that could be earned has continued to increase from its previous high of 127 in 1987, so new records are being broken as new merit badges are introduced. There is one error in this story. There are only 134 merit badges. The 135th merit badge they earned was Cinematography, which was replaced by Moviemaking last year. Since Moviemaking has a different BSA number, it can be earned even if a Scout has already earned Cinematography. But, they were never both in effect at the same time. Boys that were working on Cinematography when it was replaced could finish it and also start Moviemaking which is very similar.
It is possible, but you're a almost two years from realizing the goal from a standing start. Best explanation to date is at http://vienna.patch.com/groups/around-town/p/grapin-brothers-of-vienna-complete-every-boy-scout-merit-badge. Method of schooling doesn't matter, but if you have a Boy in a Marching Band or school/club sport, you'll recognize the time commitment!
And congratulations, Eric and Sean! By the way, I re-read my comment, and it sounded a bit snarky. Not intended. Just wondering how you did it. Home-schooled? Focused only on doing badges and rank? How long did you work on them? Things like that. Thanks again.
My son is new to Boy Scouts (as of March 2013) and badges (he was a Cub Scout and earned Arrow of Light). He is 11 and just finished fifth grade. Can someone tell me how it is possible for an 11-year-old to earn all the badges? Thank you.