This week marks the end of an exciting summer for Brennan Danlasky, 14, a star Boy Scout from Hermosa Beach. Danlasky won $600 through the Ian White Memorial Campership award, which helped pay for a summer camp of his choice.
Danlasky chose to spend a week hiking, learning wildlife skills such as tying knots, and making new friends at the Boy Scout Camp of Emerald Bay on Catalina Island.
"I feel greatly honored that I was chosen to receive this award," said Danlasky, who has been a Boy Scout for eight years. "The award inspired me greatly."
The annual scholarship, sponsored by the Danville, CA-based Lazarex Cancer Foundation and administered by South Bay Boy Scout Troop 860, was started two years ago in memory of Ian White.
White was a local Boy Scout with Troop 860 who succumbed to bone cancer in 2008 when he was 17. His life had been extended by about a year as a result of FDA-approved clinical trials supported by Lazarex.
"This campership is a tribute to Ian White's love of the outdoors and his desire for every Boy Scout to be able to enjoy the camp experience as much as he did," said Troop 860 Scoutmaster Rick Martin in a press statement.
Paul Hirsch, spokesperson for the Lazarex Cancer Foundation, said that Danlasky had been chosen from about 200 Boy Scouts across the state for the honor.
"The tangible award is the week at camp," Hirsch said. "There is also the intangible award of getting the seal of approval that you are an excellent Boy Scout."
To be considered for the award, candidates need to have a strong interest in Scouting, a positive attitude in community service, be in good standing with Troop 860, and have something of a financial need.
Danlasky, who is entering ninth grade at Mira Costa High School next week, was the perfect candidate, according to Hirsch.
Danlasky started as a Tiger Scout in the first grade and worked his way up to Life Scout. He spends about five hours each week on Scouting activities, attends camp every year and plans to become an Eagle Scout by the time he finishes high school.
Hirsch said that Danlasky's Boy Scout-related community activities included wrapping Christmas gifts for the Cheer for Children Organization, and also the elderly. Besides Scouting, Danlasky plays drums and guitar.