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B'ville: Forging friendships through Troop 107

They met as scouts in the spring of 2002.

Three had just joined Troop 107, an organization the other had been a member of since first grade. Then sixth-grader Christopher Lantry and fourth-graders Christopher Tessier, Ryan Conner and Zachary Rowland forged a friendship that they still maintain to date. Their immediate connection led them to be affectionately coined the four musketeers.

"Ryan, Chris (Tessier) and myself had all been with each other since we were in kindergarten," Rowland, 16, said. "But when we came to the troop and met Chris (Lantry), it was instantaneous friendship."

"The four of us did strike a fast friendship," Lantry, 17, added.

Since then, the four have done everything together including campouts, exploring caves, hiking the high peaks, taking a 50-mile canoe trip and building snow caves. Their most important accomplishment to date, however, has been receiving their Eagle Scout status all in the same year (2007).

For their individual projects, Lantry built bat boxes and Tessier built squirrel boxes for the Kinder Kingdom Wildlife Rehabilitation facility in Pennellville. Conner earned eagle-scout status by organizing a blood drive at the United Methodist Church in Baldwinsville and Rowland built the Blue Star Memorial in Canal Park (near Lock 24) for his eagle project.

Their involvement with Troop 107 has provided them with many learning experiences. Each of the "musketeers" has served in leadership roles for younger scouts. Lantry and Rowland served as den chiefs, Connor served as a den leader and Tessier served as a counselor in training and has been a Sabattis Scout Reservation staff member for three years.

As far as activities outside of scouting, the Baker High School students participate in a variety of them.

An avid drummer, Tessier, a junior at Baker, is a member of the Baldwinsville Marching Band and Drumline and has participated with the Onondaga Community College Drumline program for the past two years. Rowland is also a member of the Baldwinsville Marching Band. In addition, he is an actual musketeer as a member of the Syracuse Musketeers Fencing club, one of many extra-curricular activities he is involved with. A junior at Baker, Rowland's goal is to be accepted at West Point Military Academy after graduation.

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