LAWTON, Iowa – He’s dreamed about it for more than seven years but, on Sunday, Rob Logsdon finally became an Eagle Scout.
The 18-year-old’s desire of achieving the Boy Scouts’ top rank was almost dashed when a tornado ripped through the Little Sioux Scout Camp nearly three years ago.
On June 11, 2008, a tornado ravaged the 1,800-acre scout camp near Blencoe, Iowa, killing four Scouts, and leaving 60 other Scouts – including Logsdon – scurrying under the tables in the ranch’s shelter.
“Everybody got under the tables before the tornado hit,” the Lawton-Bronson senior remembered. “I heard the door ripped open. Then the shelter walls and roof were tore off and the chimney collapsed.”
Logsdon said it all lasted but a few seconds.
“My legs were trapped under a table but I was able to wiggle out,” he said. “I began pulling bricks and stones off of the injured Scouts when it felt like my right hip popped back into place.”
Logsdon had been injured.
“I could barely stand up,” he said. “I had to be carried out but I did as much as I could.”
In addition to a gash to his right knee, Logsdon had a sprained ankle and a fractured femur.
Following surgery to repair his femur, Logsdon was able to run cross-country on his high school team. He also joined his school’s track, baseball, football and wrestling teams.
“The tornado was really intense,” he said, “and I consider myself lucky to have survived it.”
For several months following the tornado, Logsdon said he couldn’t sleep during bad storms.
“A long time after, I’d wake up as soon as I’d hear thunder or a heavy wind,” he said. “But that ended and now I can sleep through anything.”
Despite it all, the incident helped to intensify Logsdon’s commitment to scouting.
“The Boy Scouts have taught me to take chances and set goals for myself,” he explained. “It also taught me to be brave.”
For his Eagle Scout projects, Logsdon painted lines in the parking lot of Lawton’s Community Presbyterian Church and planted flowers around town.
“It looks pretty good if I say so myself,” he said with a smile.
Logsdon is also pondering future plans.
“I will be going to (Indianola, Iowa’s) Simpson College in the fall,” he said. “I hope to either study prelaw or religious studies.”
Reflecting on the Boy Scouts – which he joined at age 11 – Logsdon said he’s proud of everything he’s accomplished.
“The Boy Scouts taught me to never be afraid of hard work,” he said. “That will stay with me for the rest of my life.”