John Pruitt Earned the Canoeing Merit Badge

Longtime Atlanta news anchor for WSB TV John Pruitt grew up in the Scouting program. An Eagle Scout, he spent many summers working on merit badges at the original Camp Bert Adams, which is now Cumberland Mall. In particular, Pruitt remembers working on the Canoeing merit badge one summer on Lake Darby.

For his final requirement, most likely the solo-canoeing requirement (now requirement 12), the future anchorman had to canoe across Lake Darby and back in a straight line. On his return to the shore, the instructor informed him that his technique wasn’t correct, and so he hadn’t earned the requirement. Not one to be dissuaded, Pruitt returned to his boat and earned the badge on his second attempt.

This story represents, for John Pruitt, one of the core lessons of his Scouting experience: “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.”

John Pruitt is an Eagle Scout from the Atlanta Area Council. He served as an anchor for WSB-TV in Atlanta for 46 years.