Community Service Champion: Shaping Scouts - KAUZ-TV: Newschannel 6 Now | Wichita Falls, TX

Community Service Champion: Shaping Scouts

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Three decades is a long time to do anything, but for Lee Ackley it's perfect and this Scoutmaster from Iowa Park is not ready to stop anytime soon in making a difference for the young people in his community. After meeting him, he and the scouts seem to be a perfect match.

"It made a difference when I was a kid, and as soon as I got the opportunity as an adult, I jumped in. Been with it ever since," says Lee Ackley.

Lee is talking about his 30-years of involvement in the Boy Scouts of America. And, his love of making a difference even if he didn't know he was when he did.

"There's nothing greater than having a kid walk up to you, that you don't even recognize because you don't remember because they've changed so much over the years, and say ' hey I remember that camp out I went on with you, and that you taught me this, or you taught me that, and it was really cool," said Ackley. "You know, that's what its all about. Building those leaders for tomorrow."

Ackley said after a bit of a rough childhood, it was a Scoutmaster that made a difference in his life. It was during a camping trip, when he was a kid, that he said he's never forgotten.

"I got a little altitude sickness up in the Smoky Mountains, and the Scoutmaster that was there, Jamie, made a big impact on me. So, that's what I wanted to do," Ackley told us.

Lee does not stop at scouting. He is a Physicians Assistant at the Park Clinic in Iowa Park. His caring attitude carries over into the people who come to see him when they are not feeling well. Ackley said he's always wanted to be in small town medicine, to once again know he's making a difference.

"It's being able to take care of an entire family and knowing who they are," said Ackley. "We don't do a 'cattle call' here we take care of our patients. We get to know them. You get that personal relationship going with your patients and you're able to take care of them a lot better."

It is that attitude of helping that Ackley takes to his scout troops, to get kids leadership skills they might not get anywhere else.

"We're in a society that unfortunately feels that everyone should be equal, and there is no winner, and there is no loser," Ackley said. "But, that's not reality. So in scouts we teach them how to be self sufficient and to learn things that they probably wouldn't learn otherwise."

Ackley told us that you don't have to have a kid in scouts to be in scouting. He started long before his two children came into his life. And, that it's worth it if you make the commitment.

"There's a lot of personal fulfillment in making a difference in a kids life," says Ackley.

Lee also said he has made so many life long friends through the boy scouts.

This summer he will once again go to the famed Philmont Scout Camp in New Mexico. But this year, he will be carrying the ashes of one of those friends who passed away last year. He was also devoted to scouting, and wanted his remains to be spread off of Philmont's highest peak. After meeting Lee Ackley, you see it's that sort of commitment to his friends, that also carries over to his community.

Chris Horgen, Newschannel 6

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