No doubt William Aimutis could recite this litany—along with friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean, and reverent—in his sleep. The 12-point Scout law he first learned as a youngster growing up in Crown Point, Indiana, is the same creed Aimutis shares with his two sons, Vince (18) and Don (15), and with the members of Rockton Boy Scout Troop 619.
“I like the ideals of Boy Scouts, and I enjoy teaching youth lessons in leadership,” says Aimutis of his 10 years as Scoutmaster. “My first passion is the outdoors, and scouting combines everything I love.”
Nature provides plenty of adventure as well, and Aimutis recalls one escapade in particular. During an outdoor camping jaunt in Galena, Illinois, his assistant scoutmaster was rushed to the hospital with an appendicitis attack. As Aimutis drove back to the campsite, cold rain turned to heavy snow. “After your first camp-out in bad conditions, you figure out ‘who’s who’ pretty quick,” he laughs. “Kids haven’t changed as much as they think.”
Aimutis can look forward to further high-energy quests, thanks to his recent role as leader of the Venturing Crew, a co-ed group of 14- to 20-year-olds. On the agenda are backpacking, water skiing, rock climbing, and a Colorado hiking trip. In addition to family fishing vacations this summer, Aimutis also hopes to visit his favorite spot in the country—the mountains of New Mexico—for a scout training program.
“My philosophy is you can’t be over-trained when it comes to working with youth. And my objective is to train today’s youth, so they can carry on leadership lessons.”