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Ni and Van Winkle to celebrate Eagle rank - Dunwoody Crier: News

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Ni and Van Winkle to celebrate Eagle rank

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Posted: Tuesday, February 19, 2013 10:46 am

Boy Scout Troop 764, chartered to St. Luke Presbyterian Church, is pleased to announce that Oliver Ni, son of Guanming Fang and Jian Ni of Dunwoody, and Erik Van Winkle, son of Kristie and David Van Winkle of Dunwoody, have earned the rank of Eagle Scout.

Ni and Winkle completed their Eagle Board of Review on Oct. 14 and became the 95th and 96th, respectively, Eagle Scouts of Troop 764 since it was charted in 1976.

Oliver’s Eagle project combined his love for music, the Dunwoody High School band and his love for scouting. He renovated the equipment room of the DHS band which was more than 20 years old and was inefficient for the rapidly growing band. Oliver solicited contributions from the DHS band families and raised more than enough money for the project, which allowed him to make a small contribution to the band’s finance’s by donating the surplus to the DHS band. Oliver also solicited and organized his bandmates, fellow scouts, friends and families to work on the project.

For his Eagle project, Erik built a gate for the Dunwoody Community Garden at Brook Run. He was able incorporate an age-old cast iron decoration that has historic and sentimental values into his new design of the gate. He collaborated with various interested parties in the design and construction of the gate and gained valuable experience in understanding how to obtain the required approval for the project. Erik solicited and organized other scouts in Troop 764 and his friends and families in the construction of the gate.

Oliver and Erik both joined Troop 764 in the spring of 2006, Oliver from Pack 494 and Erik from Pack 477. They were in the same patrol and were active scouts throughout their seven years as Boy Scouts in Troop 764. They became good friends early on and followed similar paths to the Eagle rank.

Oliver attended the Boy Scout summer camps at Woodruff Scout Reservation and Camp Daniel Boone five times, while Erik attended the Boy Scout summer camps at these locations every year, for a total of seven times. Both Oliver and Eric attended numerous Camporees at which they were famous for their fire building skills and their patrol was champion in various competitions every year.

They are also both members of the Order of the Arrow, completing their ordeal on the same day on May 16, 2008. These two scouts also participated in two high adventure trips. In 2009, Oliver and Erik participated in Coral Reef sailing adventure at the Florida Sea Base together. The scouts and their crew sailed and fished for five nights and had plenty of the freshest sushi one can find.

The inseparable friends finally did something different. Oliver attended Philmont High Adventure Scout Ranch in New Mexico with his troop in 2010. His crew hiked more than 70 miles in 10 days. Erik, on the other hand, attended Philmont High Adventure Scout Ranch in 2012 while he was still recovering from a shoulder surgery and hiked a whopping 107 miles in 10 days. Both Oliver and Erik served in various leadership positions through their scouting years, including assistant senior patrol leader and senior patrol leader, at various times.

Both Oliver and Erik are seniors at Dunwoody High School. In addition to being active in scouting, these two good friends are also active in various extracurricular activities.

Oliver is a member of National Honor Society and has been the drum major of the DHS Marching Band for the last two years. When he was not attending boy scouts summer camps, Oliver was a member of the Music City Drum and Bugle Corps in 2011 and 2012, participating in drum corps competitions and exhibition shows around the country.

Erik is the captain of both the DHS wrestling team and the math team. Erik has been admitted to Georgia Tech and plans to major in engineering. Oliver has received an admission from the University of Maryland, but he is hoping to attend the U.S. Naval Academy, from which he has received a letter of assurance.

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