Troop’s first Eagle Scout speaks about leadership skills

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DJ Pullaro is Boy Scout Troop 501's first Eagle Scout.PHOTOS COURTESY OF ROBERT MAHLER/SHANNON PULLARO
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DJ Pullaro is Boy Scout Troop 501's first Eagle Scout.PHOTOS COURTESY OF ROBERT MAHLER/SHANNON PULLARO
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PHOTO COURTESY OF SHANNON PULLARO
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DJ Pullaro fixed a fence at the Philo Masonic lodge in South River, completing his Eagle Scout project. DJ is the first scout from Troop 501 to achieve the rank.PHOTO COURTESY OF SHANNON PULLARO
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DJ Pullaro is Boy Scout Troop 501's first Eagle Scout.PHOTOS COURTESY OF ROBERT MAHLER/SHANNON PULLARO
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DJ Pullaro is Boy Scout Troop 501's first Eagle Scout.PHOTOS COURTESY OF ROBERT MAHLER/SHANNON PULLARO
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PHOTO COURTESY OF SHANNON PULLARO
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DJ Pullaro fixed a fence at the Philo Masonic lodge in South River, completing his Eagle Scout project. DJ is the first scout from Troop 501 to achieve the rank.PHOTO COURTESY OF SHANNON PULLARO

Using his leadership and organizational skills, East Brunswick resident DJ Pullaro has become Boy Scout Troop 501’s first Eagle Scout.

After five years in Cub Scout Pack 223, the 15-year-old said he started in a different troop at age 11 but became a founding member of Troop 501, which serves East Brunswick and South Brunswick, in 2017.

“In addition to earning 36 merit badges and providing leadership to my troop in various roles, I completed my Eagle rank by removing a creosote-soaked fence at the Philo Masonic Lodge in South River,” DJ said. “I led a team of youth and adult volunteers to fundraise and then replace that rotting fence with a new split rail fence.”

DJ earned the Eagle Scout rank along with three Eagle Palms on Feb. 27. He was celebrated on July 5 with a Court of Honor.

“The journey to Eagle helps young people learn leadership and other skills that will help them throughout life. They give back to their communities and become good citizens and role models for others,” DJ said.

Looking back on his quest to earning his Eagle Scout rank, DJ said, “This was a long journey, and many people helped me along the way. Both Jay Nicholas and Deacon Pete Cornell helped me a great deal and received Eagle Mentor pins from me.”

As Troop 501’s first Eagle Scout, DJ said he hopes that he inspired many others to pursue this path and plans to be there to help his fellow scouts along their journeys. This is a promise he made as an Eagle Scout.

“Shortly before my Eagle Board of Review, I was elected the senior patrol leader, the youth who is responsible for the direction of a troop. When COVID-19 led us to stop meeting during the spring, our senior patrol held meetings to figure out how to continue the program online,” DJ said. “We accomplished quite a bit with limited adult assistance. I am proud of all the work that our troop’s scouts did together during this challenging time.”

Contact Vashti Harris at vharris@newspapermediagroup.com.