Reuter earns Eagle Scout honor

Mason Reuter, 15, completed his Eagle Scout project earlier this year. He relocated the flagpole at the football field and had a 14-square-foot cement base installed around it. (Photos submitted)

Reuter titled his project “Standing Straight for the Flag.” The flagpole was leaning before, and Reuter said he wanted something nice to honor the veterans. The names of those who assisted in the project are also displayed on the base. In the center, the red “M” represents Monticello.
Kim Brooks
Express Editor

     Monticello is home to many Eagle Scouts, and now a new one has joined the coveted ranks.

     Fifteen-year-old Mason Reuter can now call himself an Eagle Scout.

     Rueter has been in Cub Scouts for five years, and is in his fifth year of Boy Scouts.

     Wanting to do something nice for area veterans attending the many home football games and track meets at Dean Nelson Field, Reuter took on a project that involved straightening out the flagpole. To the naked eye the pole might not have looked as though it was leaning, but for someone like Reuter who stood at attention saluting the flag at every football game, it was obvious.

     Reuter titled his Eagle Scout project “Standing Straight for the Flag.”

     “I thought it was disrespectful toward the veterans,” he said of the leaning pole. “They gave so much for our country.”

     Aside from fixing the flagpole, Reuter also installed a 14-square-foot concrete base around the pole. The center contains a Monticello Panther red “M.” The names and logos of all of the businesses that supported him in this project are stamped into the base.

     The red “M” was stained several times to get just the right brightness Reuter wanted. Reuter contacted Bard Concrete about staining the concrete, and once their supplier learned about Reuter’s Eagle Scout project, they donated the product.

     “We put on three coats and it took an eight-hour day,” recalled Reuter.

     Reuter started his Eagle Scout project in May. On June 2, he broke ground and had everything completed by the end of July.

     His initial cost estimates came in at $4,000, but after securing donations and receiving discounts from area businesses on materials, the actual cost was around $1,650.

     This project wasn’t Reuter’s first idea. When trying to come up something that benefits another organization other than the Scouts, he initially thought of honoring local veterans at Oakwood Cemetery. Reuter said he thought about having plaques made for each veteran’s gravestone and mapping out the locations of the stones, but that looked to be a large project.

     Adding something memorable to the football field and track area seemed like the perfect project. Reuter is also involved in both football and track himself.

     “It means a lot to me,” he said of seeing his Eagle Scout project all the time.

     In order to help cover the costs of the project, Reuter visited many businesses in Monticello for sponsorships. He sold spots on the concrete base for $100 and $250.

     Those who had a hand in helping Reuter with his project included:

     Kraus Plumbing & Heating, LLC (Brian Kraus) donated the well casing. Joe Tuetken Construction helped with the concrete framing.

     “He was the concrete expert,” Reuter said. He also taught the Scouts how to frame concrete. Tuetken was a Scout Master and his son, Marshall, also earned his Eagle Scout Award.

     Randy Rickels, 7th Street Stone, assisted with the stonework to place the businesses names inside the concrete.

     Bard gave Reuter a discount on the concrete for the base. Kromminga Motors donated the use of a skid loader for the project as well.

     Those who donated funds toward the project included: Monticello Sports, VFW (also donated two flags for the pole), Fidelity Bank & Trust, Citizens State Bank, State Farm Insurance, Monticello Express, MinnTex, Rick Jenkins, Freese Motors, and Spahn & Rose Lumber Company (also donated re-rod).

     Reuter said at first, the new flag pole and base were going to be installed inside the track, but knowing heavy equipment was needed, and the fact that the school district was having the track resurfaced and repainted, the project was moved to the outside of the track near the visitors section.

     “If we did it inside the track, we were only given a 10-day window,” Reuter said.

     As far as permission for his project, Reuter brought his idea to the attention of Dennis Dirks, the district’s buildings and grounds manager, who then went to Superintendent Brian Jaeger. From there, Reuter said he was given the go-ahead.

     “They thought it was a good idea,” he said. The upside, no permits were needed.

     “It’s a really great feeling, and it’s neat to see it completed,” said Reuter.

     “It’s a really cool,” he said of becoming an Eagle Scout as a sophomore in high school. “Only 6 percent (of Boy Scouts) actually make it this far, and I’m one of the few.”

     Reuter is the son of Jim and Jackie Reuter of Monticello.


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