Archive for Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Nebraska funeral held for Iowa Boy Scout

June 17, 2008


— An Iowa Boy Scout who "did so many great things for a lot of people in his short life" was buried back home in Nebraska on Monday.

Friends and family of Aaron Eilerts gathered at St. Mary's Catholic Church in West Point. He and his parents had lived there until his dad got a new job about four years ago and they moved to Eagle Grove, Iowa, in the north-central part of the state.

The 14-year-old was one of four Boy Scouts killed Wednesday when a tornado swept through the Little Sioux Scout Ranch, in western Iowa, about 40 miles north of Omaha. Nearly 50 other people were injured; four remain hospitalized.

A service for Josh Fennen, 13, was held Saturday in Omaha. Services for Sam Thomsen, 13, and Ben Petrzilka, 14, are scheduled for 10 a.m. today in Omaha.

Fred Ullrich, a Boy Scout leader who was among those injured, has described Aaron Eilerts as "a fine, fine boy."

"He was such a spark plug," Ullrich said.

A tribute page on the Internet said that, in addition to his Scouting, Aaron had participated in football, cross country, track, band, choir and theater.

He also was involved in Iowa Character Counts, a character education organization. According to principal Dawn Sievertsen of Robert Blue Middle School in Eagle Grove, which Aaron attended, Aaron was named statewide runner-up for an Iowa Character Counts Award because of his many community service projects.

Sievertsen, who prepared the Web tribute page, said Aaron had founded a project called Pillowcases for Patients. He made them for sick children.

Whenever a teacher at his school had a baby, she knew she'd get a handmade blanket from Aaron.

"He had endless talents," said Sievertsen. "His way of having fun was to do good things for people. ... Aaron is the kind of kid you want to honor," she said last week shortly after learning of his death.


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