By Dana Trumbull
If you drive by Apache Junction High School on Ironwood Road, you will notice that sixteen saplings have suddenly sprouted in front of the administration building. If you drove by on June 17, you would have seen that the magic is the result of the sweat and effort of 30 volunteers from Scout Troop #451, family members and neighboring troops, working together to implement Brady Williams’ Eagle Scout project.
Williams thanked the volunteers and donors, “We were able to get started at 6:00 a.m.; the ground was very hard, which was expected, but with lots of muscle and sweat—and a little help from an auger —within less than two hours, we had sixteen trees planted. I could not have done this without the help from all the volunteers, and I thank you!”
Williams knew that he wanted his project to be associated with Apache Junction High School. Acting on Principal LaPrise’s recommendations, Williams worked to finalize his idea of planting trees along the front of the school where there is no current vegetation. A landscaper who works with the school determined that the type of tree adaptable to the location would be a Mulga Acacia. Sixteen trees were needed to cover the proposed planting area, with the trees planted 20 feet apart from each other. Williams presented his idea to the Boy Scouts of America committee and, in partnership with the AJ school district, his plan was approved. He worked out a deal with A&P Nursery, and the trees were donated by friends, family and other supporters of the project.
Principal LaPrise readily admitted that this project has been on his wishlist for quite awhile and to have the dream fulfilled by a student made it all the sweeter. “As a principal, there is nothing like having students take pride in their school. In the future, Brady will be able to bring his family back to his alma mater and show them his accomplishment.”
Williams transferred to Cactus Canyon Junior High in 2015 after graduating Noah Webster in Mesa. Due to his academic achievements, he was allowed to skip his final year in middle school and started 9th grade at Apache Junction High School last year. Williams, who just turned 14 in May, finished his freshman year with a 4.0+ GPA. He is a member of NJROTC and varsity swim team. He is also a member of a year round swim team (Mesa Aquatics Club) and is a Life Scout in The Boy Scouts of America Troop 451.