Hardyston Girl Scouts honor fallen service members at Arlington National Cemetery

Hardyston. Troop 96266 is committed to service projects that support and honor veterans and active military service members.

| 31 Aug 2021 | 03:25

Four members of Girl Scout Troop 96266 were selected to represent Wallkill Valley at Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia.

On Aug. 27 they presented a wreath they made to honor the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier during the public wreath laying at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, said Troop leader Anna Marie Jensen.

“They are an inspiring group of young ladies who are continuously honoring our armed forces through the many service projects they have participated in,” said Jensen.

Girl Scout Sabrina Barbato said it was a “once-in-a-lifetime experience and an honor to participate in the ceremony.”

Girl Scout Brooke Jensen agreed “it was an amazing experience. It made me really proud to see the pretty wreath and it said ‘Wallkill Valley Troop 96266’ in our country’s capital.”

Girl Scout Gabrielle Rubalcava said she was “happy and honored to be a part of the ceremony.”

And Girl Scout Catherine Byra said, “I felt honored to be allowed to be there, and I’m really happy that I got to do it.”

The Troop’s service projects include a wreath-laying ceremony at Veterans Field in Sparta, flag retirement ceremonies, and Hudson Valley Honor Flight welcome home ceremonies. They send cards veterans and attend services on Memorial Day.

“I was excited to have the chance to offer this experience to my troop members,” said Jensen. “I know it’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and a huge honor to be allowed to participate in the wreath-laying ceremony at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.

“Despite some pre-ceremony jitters, the girls recognized the importance of what they were doing and were glad to honor all who have served our country. It was an incredibly moving ceremony and I was overcome with pride seeing my scouts up there.

“I’ve had the privilege of watching these girls grow into the admirable young ladies they are today and I commend their many acts of selflessness they have displayed over the years.”

All four of the girls are in seventh grade at Hardyston Middle School and second-year Cadette level Girl Scouts. All the girls have completed the requirements for the previous Junior level, which includes Take Action community service projects and mentoring younger scouts in earning badges.

The second-year Cadette level gives the girls the opportunity to earn their Silver Award, which is the second-highest award for a Girl Scout in the United States. All the girls that participated in the event have reached their seventh and eighth year being a Girl Scout.

If you are looking to join Girl Scouts in the Wallkill Valley area, call Molly Hubbard at 973-862-1333.

“It was an amazing experience. It made me really proud to see the pretty wreath and it said ‘Wallkill Valley Troop 96266’ in our country’s capital.” Girl Scout Brooke Jensen