Blake Jahn, a senior at Utica High School, is the 156th Eagle Scout in the 56-year history of Troop 156.

Blake Jahn, a senior at Utica High School, is the 156th Eagle Scout in the 56-year history of Troop 156.

Photo provided by Mike Boice

Shelby Scout becomes 156th Eagle Scout in Troop 156

By: Jonathan Szczepaniak | Shelby-Utica News | Published March 19, 2024


SHELBY TOWNSHIP/UTICA — Scott Boice, the Scoutmaster for Boy Scout Troop 156 in Shelby Township, said that on Feb. 15, Blake Jahn, a senior at Utica High School, became the 156th Eagle Scout in the troop’s 56-year history dating to 1968.

“In 2019, my son and I were looking for a troop to cross over to from Cub Scouts,” said Boice. “We were looking for a troop that met on Mondays, because of our schedule. Troop 156 was the last of three troops we visited. The meeting we attended was a normal meeting that was focusing on cleaning out the tents. When we got in the car after the meeting, my son said, ‘I like it here.’ And we have been happy ever since.

“We have been blessed with great Scouts who hold leadership (positions) and run the troop, since we are boy-led. A big reason for the long success of Troop 156 has been the adults that I work with now as Scoutmaster. Whether they be former Scoutmasters, assistant Scoutmasters, committee chair, treasurer, advancement chair or just a parent who volunteers their time, we have been fortunate to have so many committed adults that allow our Scouts to have great experiences in and out of the state of Michigan.”

Blake Jahn and his family have been heavily involved in Troop 156 for many years. His brothers Owen and Aaron are also Eagle Scouts, and their dad, Ray, was Scoutmaster.

Natalie Jahn, Blake’s mom, said Blake was the last of their three boys to join Troop 156, a troop they love because of its commitment to boy-led leadership, patriotism, community service and the outdoors. 

“Throughout the years of Scouting, the boys began to uphold the number 156 to be a number of importance. One hundred fifty-six represented so much of who they were becoming as they turned into young men growing with the world’s greatest troop. Watching the number of Eagle Scouts in the troop grow, it became a fascinating idea to be Eagle Scout No. 156 in Troop 156, though we were never sure everything would work out so perfectly to actually happen. We remember the first Scout that obtained the rank of Eagle when we were new to the troop: Ian McKinnon, Eagle Scout No.115 in 2013,” she said.

Owen Jahn was the troop’s 140th Eagle Scout in 2020, and Aaron Jahn was the troop’s 147th Eagle Scout in 2022.

“The double honor of possessing the rank of Eagle Scout No.156 in Troop 156 will always be a moment of pride for us. All the great Scouts throughout the years who have become Eagles along the way have paved (the way for) this incredible honor,” Natalie Jahn said.

Mike Alsobrooks, the former Scoutmaster for BSA Troop 156, said he was the Scoutmaster of the troop when Blake joined as an 11-year-old in fourth grade. 

“His older brothers Owen and Aaron were already in the troop and all three boys were well behaved and respected members of the troop. Many people associate Scouting with learning outdoor skills, and that is indeed an important part of the program. What I didn’t realize before my oldest son joined Scouting was the leadership skills he would learn, as well as the mentorship opportunities he would have with the various adult leaders and helpers, as well as youth members with many different backgrounds and skill sets,” he said.

He said in Blake’s case, he was a mentor to other boys from the beginning. 

“One of the first things I recall about Blake was him helping one of the other first-year Scouts get through his first overnight trip with a thunderstorm. Most 11-year-olds are scared in such situations and I’m sure Blake had some fears himself. Nevertheless, Blake was able to reassure the Scout and helped him make it through his first thunderstorm without calling his parents for a pickup,” he said.

He said he is really happy that Blake has finished his own Eagle project, especially considering how many other boys Blake helped with their own projects.

“Our troop has been a part of Shelby Township for 56 years and we continuously support Shelby Clean Up Day, Scouting for Food, Veterans and Memorial Day celebrations at City Hall, and we’ve provided countless service hours throughout the community,” he said.

Blake Jahn said being the youngest of three brothers, he always followed in his older brothers’ footsteps because he wanted to be just like them.

“We all went through Cub Scouts together, then when my oldest brother, Owen, wanted to move on in Scouts and become a Boy Scout, he had to choose a troop to join. We were all blessed that he chose Troop 156. Then my other brother, Aaron, joined and then it was my turn. Once it was my turn to enter the troop, I was extremely nervous. However, there is a reason this troop has been around for 56 years; we are truly all family and I started to fit in right away — the best troop in the world without a doubt,” he said.

He learned about the commitment and hard work required to become an Eagle Scout from his brothers.

“Watching my brothers strive to get this amazing achievement complete, getting over any obstacles in the way, I knew I had to as well. The honor of wearing that Eagle badge and how proud my brothers looked once completing Eagle was like none other. Then came my turn. I started with my first email in January of 2023 and officially obtained the rank of Eagle on Feb. 15, 2024. I went from being a junior in high school stressed about the SAT and maintaining my 4.00 GPA to becoming an Eagle Scout, which will be my greatest achievement for a long, long time,” he said.

However, he didn’t obtain this goal on his own.

“First off, I never could’ve even dreamed of becoming an Eagle Scout if it wasn’t for my brothers, Owen and Aaron, showing me what it’s like to set goals and strive to be the best I can be. My parents, who helped me stay on task and would push me to get what I could done without being over forceful; they wanted me to get this accomplished for myself. I couldn’t ask for better brothers or family surrounding me. Also, not to mention every Scout that signed stuff off for me as I worked through the ranks and taught me how to be a young man,” he said.

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