Longest Serving Scoutmaster in Middle Tennessee Passes Away

From the Tennessean:

BRENTWOOD — Billy Jim Vaughn, the beloved leader of the oldest Boy Scout troop in Middle Tennessee and one of the oldest continuously chartered troops in the United States, died on Saturday. Vaughn, 97, leaves behind his wife, Joy, of the Brentwood Fire Department, a daughter, two stepsons and two stepdaughters, eight grandchildren and three great grandchildren — not to mention more than 2,500 young men who passed through Boy Scout Troop 1 in the 74 years he was its leader.

Vaughn was a direct connection to the origins of scouting in Middle Tennessee.  He became a member of Troop 1 in 1926. In 1935, at age 23, Vaughn took over the troop from its founding scoutmaster, Curtis B. Haley. Haley had founded Troop 1 in Nashville on July 3, 1910. Years later Vaughn described Haley as “the epitome of what I want my life to be like,”

In 2002, one day short of his 90th birthday, a statue in his honor called the “Lone Scout” was unveiled on the Hillsboro Road grounds of the Middle Tennessee Council, Boy Scouts of America.

Vaughn was a member of Brentwood United Methodist Church, where Troop 1 is chartered.

Services are set for Tuesday at the church on Franklin Road. Visitation is from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Monday and from noon to 2 p.m. Tuesday. Services will immediately follow visitation. All current and former scouts are invited to attend in dress scout uniform.

Vaughn worked for 44 years at United Methodist Publishing House, then went to work for Jane Jones Employment Service/Ranstad.

In addition to the scouts, he was active in his church and in the Brentwood and Nashville Rotary Clubs.

He has been honored by many organizations over the years, but remained humble and focused on others.

“It’s like coaching football,” Vaughn said in 1996 prior to a Leadership Brentwood award ceremony, “When you accomplish something and see the kids grow up to be somebody well … actually its just exciting and fun. Something I just like to do.”

For more information, see the Tennessean article here.

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