North Platte High School junior Adam Freeze plans to pursue a career as a chiropractor.
But with his father and older brother both members of the North Platte Police Department, that family business remains an option as well.
“It’s not really my first choice, but I wouldn’t be against it,” the 17-year-old said.
That background is one reason he chose to make a beautification of the Lincoln County Law Enforcement Memorial at Iron Horse Park the focus of his Eagle Scout community service project.
That work was recognized in a short ceremony at the memorial on Monday night. Freeze’s Troop 291 members, family and friends, and members of the police department were in attendance.
His father, Roger, is an investigator with the department, and his brother, Andrew, is an officer as well.
“We just drove around town looking for something that needed some love and this caught my eye,” Adam Freeze said of the inception of the project. “This is something that is meaningful to me and it definitely needed some love.”
Freeze planted flowers, plants and grasses at the memorial, as well as a row of Taylor juniper trees that line the outside of the memorial’s back fence. He also installed a donation box, which already has raised roughly $100. Those funds and any future contributions will be applied to the site’s cost.
“We let the boys pick their own projects but we want it to be something that is going to stay in the community and be worthwhile to the community,” said Craig Godfrey, who has been a scoutmaster in North Platte for 19 years and has nearly four decades’ experience with the organization overall. “We are pretty proud of what we’ve done over the years.
“This is great project, probably a little bigger than what we wanted normally,” Godfrey said. “but we knew we had the support behind us and we were able to accomplish a good thing here.”
Freeze said the project began in April and was completed at the end of September. He received assistance from his fellow troop members as well as from his brother — a former Eagle Scout — and father, who is an assistant leader of Troop 291. Freeze said he also received contributions and support from about six local businesses along the way, whom he mentioned in a short speech on Monday.
He said the work at the site is a way to “honor those (officers) who have fallen and let the ones who are still serving know that we are thinking about them and that people are in support of them no matter what.”
He said the project was also born out of his respect for law enforcement in general.
“They’re protectors,” Freeze said. “I know people hear a lot about what (law enforcement officers) do but there’s also a lot of things that you don’t hear about that they deal with every night.”
Freeze is currently a Life Scout, the second-highest rank attainable in Scouting. The project is a step toward the rank of Eagle, which he aims to attain before he ages out of the organization at 18.
Freeze said his involvement in the Scouts has been meaningful. He added that respect for himself and for others is perhaps the biggest thing that he has taken away from his time in the organization.
“Just treat people the way that you would want them to treat you as well,” Freeze said. “It’s just about being a good person.”
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