Civil Air Patrol Cadet Staff Sergeant Andrew Ruiz (second from right), with Squadron Commander John Connelly Jr., Andrew's parents 2nd Lieutenant Thomas and Linda, and Mayor Liz Harris at the new CAP HQ.

Big Bear Valley, CA — Three young men from the Big Bear Valley have been honored for their effort and commitment in ceremonies held this month. Civil Air Patrol cadet Andrew Ruiz, a 14-year-old who finished eighth grade this week, was honored with the Wright Brothers Award, earned for having completed all Airman ranks with Squadron 6750 prior to transitioning into the Sergeant ranks. To achieve this, Ruiz, son of 2nd Lieutenant Thomas and Linda Ruiz of Fawnskin, demonstrated competencies in aerospace education, leadership and physical fitness. Cadet Staff Sergeant Ruiz received his award from Big Bear Lake Mayor Liz Harris in a ceremony at the new Civil Air Patrol headquarters at the Big Bear Airport, where cadets meet each Tuesday at 6pm. (For more information, contact Bruce Black at 585-4120.)

Eagle Scouts Kevin Magdiel and Jake Murie are also scholars and athletes, given their top grades and participation in the Bears' cross-country team, which won their sixth consecutive DeAnza League title earlier this school year.

Two Big Bear High School students, both members of the Class of 2010, earned their Eagle Scout ranking in a ceremony hosted by Boy Scout Troop 49, recently honored as Troop of the Year for their Inland Empire district. Big Bear Lake’s Mayor Pro Tem Bill Jahn was on hand June 12 to honor Big Bear’s two newest Eagle Scouts, Jake Murie and Kevin Magdiel; as their Scoutmaster Alyn Nielsen tells KBHR, “As Eagle Scouts, Jake and Kevin now join Steven Spielberg, about 20 astronauts and a lot of U.S. presidents. They are both very good young men, and we are sorry to lose them as they become adults.” In fact, both Murie and Magdiel are moving on, as they graduate from Big Bear High School on Friday; Murie will attend Montana University and Magdiel will be going to the United States Military Academy at West Point. Scoutmaster Nielsen points out that the two each spent about four years working toward their prestigious Eagle Scout badges, which included a community project by each; Murie planted trees at North Shore Elementary while Magdiel built a storage shed for the Recreation and Park District’s The Ranch at Erwin Lake. (Both Murie and Magdiel have been in the news before; input either name in the KBHR search bar for more stories.)