Fred Mercer

 

Featured Tribesman

Fred Mercer, Sachem White Patch

I RECEIVED A CALL REMINDING ME THAT THIS SUMMER’S CAMPING SEASON WILL BE MY 50TH YEAR AS A TRIBESMAN OF MIC-O-SAY. AS I REFLECT BACK ON MY MEMORIES, TAKING ME BACK TO THAT NIGHT OF MY FIRST CAMPFIRE, AND THE FOUR ITEM’S THAT I WAS TO THINK ABOUT. THOSE 4 THINGS HAVE MADE A BIG DIFFERENCE IN MY LIFE.

 

EVEN NOW, WHAT A BETTER PLACE TO REMEMBER THAN TO BUILD A SMALL FIRE AND THINK ABOUT ALL THOSE YOUNG MEN THAT I GREW UP WITH. MY FIRE TONIGHT IS A LOT BRIGHTER BUT NOT ANY MORE MEANINGFUL THAN THAT FIRE, FROM ALL THOSE YEARS AGE.

 

THAT SUMMER, I HAD COMPLETED THE EAGLE BOARD OF REVIEW THE WEEK BEFORE CAMP. I WAS SURE I HAD THE WORLD BY THE TAIL. LITTLE DID I KNOW WHAT WAS AHEAD IN MY LIFE? THE LATE 60’S WERE FUN WORKING MY WAY TO WARRIOR AT CAMP AND ON THRU THE PAINT STATIONS.

 

AS TIME WENT ON, I MEET MY FUTURE WIFE, WENT TO TRADE SCHOOL, STARTED TO WORK FOR TRANS WORLD AIRLINES. TRANSFERRED TO SAN FRANSCIO IN 1970, RETURNED TO KANSAS CITY VIA ST LOUIS MO IN 1973. WORKED FOR SAUDI ARABIAN AIRLINES 1982 & 83. I WORKED IN KANSAS CITY, FOR AMERICAN AIRLINES AFTER THE PURCHASE OF TWA IN 2003, UNTIL THEY CLOSED THE OVERHAHAUL BASE IN 2010 WHEN I TRANSFERRED TO ST LOUIS TO CONTINUE WORKING AS A CREW CHIEF FOR AMERICAN AIRLINES. I CONTINUED TO ATTEND A WEEK OF CAMP EACH SUMMER WHEN POSSIBLE. AS MY DAD CONTINUED TO ATTEND A WEEK EVERY YEAR WITH ALBANY’S TROOP, MY YOUNGER BROTHERS WERE ALSO THERE FOR NUMEROUS YEARS, EVENTUALLY MY OWN SONS, AND NOW MY GRANDSONS. THINKING BACK NOW, I’M NOT SURE I REALIZED WHAT A GREAT TIME I WAS HAVING. I MADE A LOT OF GOOD FRIENDS, SOME FOR A WEEK, SOME FOR A LIFE TIME,

 

CAMP HAS CHANGED A LOT WITH NEW CAMP SITES, OLD ONES NO LONGER USED JUST LIKE THE OLD TRAILES THAT ARE GROWN OVER AND EXIST ONLY IN MY MEMORIES OF CAMP AND ACTIVITIES OFSO LONG AGO. EVEN NOW, WHILE SEATED ON THE BENCHES BESIDE THE PARKING LOT, I’VE WATCHED A MANY FRIEND COME AND GO BUT I STILL HAVE SO MANY RICH MEMORIES THAT I WILL CARRY WITH ME ALWAYS.

 

I WISH I COULD THANK THE ENTIRE GREAT TRIBESMAN THAT HAS MADE IT POSSIBLE FOR ME TO HAVE HAD SO MANYOF MY EXPERIENCES. SOME OF THESE SCOUTS ARE NO LONGER TRAVELING THE HILLS AND VALLEY’S OF CAMP. AND WE ALL HAVE STORIES ABOUT THESE TRIBESMAN AND CAMP THAT ARE NEAR AND DEAR TO US.

 

I’M VERY PROUD OF MY FAMILY, INCLUDING 2 SON THAT ARE EAGLE SCOUTS AND KEEPERS, 3 GRANDSONS IN THE TRIBE, ALSO MY WIFE, A DAUGHTER AND 2 SON INLAWS ARE TRIBESMAN.

IT HAS BEEN VERY HARD TO WRITE ABOUT MYSELF. SO MANY THINGS ID LIKE TO PASS ON TO THESE NEW MEMBERS, AND THE OLDEST TRIBESMAN.

 

I ALWAYS THOUGHT THAT TIME WAS A PREDITOR, STALKING ME. NEVER HAVING ENOUGH TIME, FOR THE GREAT THINGS I WANTED TO DO WITH FAMILY AND FRIENDS. BUT AS I LOOK BACK THE LAST 50 YEARS, I’VE COME TO RELIZE THAT TIME HAD ME ON A GREAT JOURNEY. I’M HOPING THAT TIME WILL KEEP ME ON THIS JOURNEY FOR MANY MORE CAMPING SEASONS. 

 

SACHAM WHITE PATCH

 

FRED J MERCER

 

YOU’RE FRIEND IN SCOUTING.

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