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Sasquesahanough Lodge » Featured, News » Centurion Award – Don Fry

Centurion Award – Don Fry

Donald M. Fry

Donald M. Fry

We are now into the Centurion recipients for service as a adult in the Order of the Arrow.

Our next Centurion recipients are Clarence “Bud” March and Don Fry. Bud for his service to Tuckahoe Lodge from 1955 to 2010 and Don for his service to Susquehannock Lodge from 1974 to 2010. Both continue as current members of Sasquesahanough Lodge today.

Donald M. Fry is a long-time member of Order of the Arrow. He attained Ordeal on August 17, 1974, Brotherhood on June 7, 1975 and has been a Vigil member since June 7, 1981. Scouting and the OA are obviously strong points of his life, for almost half of which he has been deeply involved in scouting (over 40 of his over 80 years).

Don is always cheerful, and an inspiration for us who work with him. He makes you smile just talking to him. At over 80 years in age, we would all hope to be as spry as Don Fry. His vigil name tells us something. Amangi Achgiguwen Meechalhukquot means “Large Noisy Redhead,” and although imposing in stature, Don is never a threatening person in his presence to others. And the moniker “noisy” may be a misnomer because almost every regulated word he speaks is never “noise,” but usually sage advice. He is a gentleman we all admire and the example we would hope to be.
Don is a current troop committee member, former unit commissioner, and former troop adult leader of two separate troops in our council (an Assistant Scoutmaster in one, and Institutional Representative in another), and a former officer adviser in the Lodge.

During the early years of his involvement in the Lodge, we are told, he worked closely with the youth leaders of Susquehannock Lodge, many of whom were from Don’s units. During these years, the lodge had a large dance team that went out whenever requested without fail to Cub Pack banquets and Troop courts of honor to showcase the Order of the Arrow.

Due to financial issues, there was consideration given to selling Hidden Valley Scout Reservation in the mid 1990’s. A committee was formed in an effort to revamp the camp to fix some of the infrastructure problems. Their efforts resulted in refurbishing of the pool (which cost several hundred thousand dollars), erecting a new year-round shower house for adults (male and female), cabin improvements (indoor sanitary facility additions), an upgraded septic system for the administration and dining hall, and the addition of a training center that is used for NYLT and other activities. As a result, the Friends of Hidden Valley was formed, of which Don is a member. In the Dining Hall at Hidden Valley there is a display of coffee mugs that occupies an entire wall, with camp leader mugs dating back to the 1960’s. If you look closely you can see a small engraved plate that says the entire collection and display was donated by Don. He works diligently for the FOHV as it continues to improve the camp. Don is unselfish in his devotion to keep Hidden Valley a vital part of the council’s camping program.

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