BERKELEY HEIGHTS, NJ – That was one Boy Scout meeting that really went to the dogs.
At this week’s meeting of Boy Scout Troop 68 in Berkeley Heights, Detective Brian Way from the Union County Sheriffs K9 unit, who is also an Eagle Scout, came to talk about his job as a K-9 officer. He also brought his German shepherd, Chance, who is trained to find narcotics.
Way spoke about the different jobs he is called to, and what he does on a day-to-day basis. Then he let Chance off the leash, and the dog tracked around the room until he found a box of narcotics that Way had hidden earlier.
“The scouts were very impressed with the performance of the dog in finding the drugs that were hidden, and would like to thank Officer Brian and Chance for stopping by our troop,” said Senior Patrol Leader Noah Boldt.
Matthew Muscarella, Junior Assistant Scoutmaster, agreed.
“The troop learned a lot from Officer Brian and Chance including how their unit operates, and the type of calls they respond to,” Muscarella said.
The Union County Sheriff’s Office is the regional K-9 training hub for a large portion of central and northern New Jersey. Every year, an estimated 80 K-9s and their police partners graduate from the Union County Sheriff’s Office K-9 Training Academy in Summit. Dogs trained at the academy are used for a variety of tasks, including working with the State Police and local authorities. And, like Chance, they are often used to sniff out narcotics.
Assistant Scoutmaster Joe Savino said the event was a great example of how much Scouting offers its members.
“I am proud and privileged to work with such a great group of Scouts,” Savino said. “Our troop teaches our youth to become leader in our community by giving them an opportunity to develop leadership skills through living the Scout Oath and by organizing events such as this one. Scouting truly give our youth advantages that you will not find anywhere else.”