Rutland Flatcar Restoration, Eagle Scout Project

Hello Dear Scouting and Railway Enthusiasts,

  My name is Sami El-Abid. I’m a Life Scout in Troop 15 of Redding, CT. I’m currently working on my Eagle Scout Project for the benefit of the Danbury Railway Museum. Please take a moment to read about my project and share with your friends and family. Kindly consider supporting me and the Museum in this big effort of restoring a 1902 Rutland railroad flatcar.
I joined Scouts BSA in October of 2015 at the age 12. Although I did not start as a Cub Scout, I was quick to learn the ins and outs of Scouting. In my first year, I became the Quartermaster of Troop 19 of Norwalk. I later on moved to Troop 14 of Norwalk and became the Assistant Senior Patrol Leader (ASPL). Even though I think having the responsibilities of an ASPL was a great achievement, I believe my greatest satisfaction was helping a Scout rank up at a faster pace than I did, for sure faster than I thought was possible. Afterwards, I transferred to Troop 15 of Redding to ease the transportation burden on my parents, now with 4 siblings in Scouting since 2019. I immediately became the Troop Guide of the patrol of younger Scouts, the “Epic Empire”. I’m continuously encouraged by my adult leaders’ appreciation of the impact I have on that patrol’s progress.

  Beyond my Troop, I’ve been lucky to have a fulfilling Scouting experience. I’ve been trained under the National Youth Leadership Training (NYLT), and later on was invited and served on its Troop Guide staff training others. I’ve also been invited and served twice on the Woodbadge adult leadership program as a Youth Staff. Moreover, I’m the Camping Promotions Chairman at our council Owaneco Lodge.

  In 2018, I started volunteering at the Danbury Railway Museum, where I took people on tours around the museum and helped out where needed. Although these service hours helped me achieve the rank of Life Scout, it opened up my eyes to more Eagle Scout Project possibilities. I initially considered the typical projects, like clearing a trail or making benches, all good and beneficial causes. However, I deeply felt I needed more. After all, I only get one chance at an Eagle Scout Project for life. Therefore, I attended the Museum’s restoration committee meeting and asked for one of their restoration projects. That’s when the perfect one caught my eye: a 1902 Rutland flatcar.
  It’s the oldest railcar in the Museum. Built in 1902, it was used to hull various goods, but common cargo seen on the flatcars were marble blocks since Rutland was based in Vermont where marble was plentiful. Another cargo that was seen on the flatcars during the early 1900s was steam bed rollers, they were a type of boilers on wheels that a cattle could pull along side the tobacco dirt beds to sterilize the dirt before and after each tobacco season. It now resides behind the pump house. This one was donated to the museum by the Green Mountain RR, in July 16 1999 (the locomotive behind the flatcar is a ALCO RS-11 Diesel)

  I immediately started working out how much the project would cost, and believe me, it’s not cheap. The wood alone will cost around $4537, and the paint over $300. I did not let that stop me, especially since I love trains. Frankly, all my family loves trains. We are 5 siblings, each with model trains ranging from O, HO and N gauges, to Lego trains. So in hopes to give this project a chance to succeed, I’ve launched this GoFundMe page to raise the funds by April 10, 2020.

  Kindly consider helping us and the Danbury Railway Museum in bringing back this 1902 Rutland railroad flatcar. Our goal is $5000. My fellow Scouts and I cannot do it without your support. Thank you so much for your generosity.

All the funds for an Eagle Scout project go to the organization for which the scout is doing the project, including any "left over" money if there is any.

Yours in Scouting and Railway Spirit,

Sami El-Abid

Eagle Scout Candidate44747408_1579022382329061_r.jpegHere is a link to the museum's


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Sami El-Abid 
Norwalk, CT
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