Vandals of an Eagle Scout project at a Dundee neighborhood school might benefit from spending time with the young man responsible for completing the job.

Dundee Elementary Principal Kaye Goetzinger said she was “just sick” Sunday morning when she found that seven newly planted Little Henry flowering shrubs had been ripped out of the ground overnight. A former student, Curtis McCullough, had organized the planting of the shrubs on the southwest corner of the school grounds with help from his friends in Boy Scout Troop 42.

“Curtis needed a project to become an Eagle Scout, and we needed something done on that corner, so it was a win-win situation,” Goetzinger said. “He organized a group of Scouts, and everything went wonderfully until one of our teachers called me Sunday and told me what happened.”

The teacher replanted five shrubs, but two shrubs were missing. Goetzinger said she is asking security personnel to review surveillance videos to try to determine the culprits.

McCullough wasn’t available for comment Monday, but Dan Rock, who advises Troop 42 Scouts trying to earn the Eagle badge, wonders if the vandalism was done by boys with too much time on their hands. If so, Rock wishes they could spend some of that time with McCullough, who will be a senior at Central High.

“If it was some young boys making bad choices, Curtis would be the first to put his arm around them and say, ‘Hey, guys, let’s make this right,’” Rock said. “Then he’d talk to them about Scouting so they would be helping us plant the bushes next time.”

Goetzinger said the school’s Parent Teacher Organization paid for the bushes. She hopes money is available to replace the two missing plants.

“Curtis would’ve taken on the project whether it was seven bushes or 20 bushes,” she said. “I knew him when he was here, and he’s just a great kid who is always willing to help others and work hard. We could use more like him.”

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