Airmen help Boy Scouts earn prestigious merit badges


Larry Edgecombe, an eighth grader at Holy Trinity Episcopal Academy and a member of Boy Scout Troop #355, opens the door of a gamma ray detector as Staff Sgt. Nicholas Jarvis, a radiochemistry lab technician, observes and explains how the detector works.

VIERA VOICE Courtesy of Susan Romano


Nearly 100 Boy Scouts from 25 troops across Central Florida traveled to Patrick Air Force Base on March 31 to earn the much-sought-after Nuclear Science Merit Badge.

Airmen from the Air Force Technical Applications Center helped the Boy Scouts.

Capt. Sky Thai, this year’s project officer and a physicist at AFTAC’s radiochemistry laboratory, coordinated a full day of events for the scouts that included classroom instruction, hands-on projects and visual experiments and displays.

“When we first started hosting the troops, we wanted to give the boys the best possible experience,” said Troy Porter, AFTAC’s equipment maintenance technician and Scoutmaster for Troop #314 in West Melbourne. “We’ve continued to improve the program — from better, more interactive briefings to increased access to our lab and its equipment.’’