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Two Dedicated Young Scouts Reach Prestigious Rank Of Eagle Scout



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UPDATE (12:10 pm): This feature has been updated to correct the spelling of Ross Salvo's surname.


Michael Poidomani and Connor Sinapi reached the end of their Eagle Scout journey at a June 4 Court of Honor ceremony.

After initially earning the rank of Eagle Scout in April, the ceremony at Cullens Youth Association saw each of the boys’ accomplishments officially recognized together. Although it is not completely unusual to have dual ceremonies, Sinapi and Poidomani both emphasized that their journey had to end together.

“Me and him are like two peas in a very big pod,” said Poidomani. “I think I still would have gotten Eagle anyways, but I just don’t think my scouting journey would have been the same.”

Their journey began back in elementary school in Newtown Cub Scout Pack 270, where it would eventually lead them to the path of Eagle Scout. The journey to Eagle Scout is a long road and besides having to fill out paperwork both boys also had to complete their own volunteer work.

Though required, neither of the boys took any less satisfaction from helping their community with their Eagle projects.

“I used to tell people in elementary school, for my birthdays don’t buy me presents or money I don’t want any of that,” said Sinapi. “Instead, I did collections for the pajama program, gift donations for make-a-wish, and gift collections for the Newtown Toy Drive.”

Living up to his own beliefs, Sinapi chose to benefit the Cullens Youth Association for his Eagle project. By benefitting the Cullens Youth Association, he wanted to make a lasting impact and that would start with the property.

After noticing the obvious waterfront and fire pit issues, along with many others, he decided to address all the property issues despite being told it was too ambitious. To get it done, he divided his thirty volunteers into several groups over four days.

One group of adults constructed an eight-foot by twelve-foot platform stage with a podium, another group of older scouts built a new fire pit, and some younger scouts cleared the area around the flagpole. After finishing construction and spreading new woodchips around the trail and amphitheater, Sinapi and the board members of Cullens Youth Association were quite impressed with the finished project.

Poidomani, who helped with Sinapi’s project, opted to take a different approach with his Eagle project. After previously volunteering for various organizations in Newtown, he chose Newtown High School for his Eagle projects.

Looking to make a unique contribution to his school, he completed two projects with over 50 members of BSA Troop 70 and the Newtown community. Before embarking to complete his projects, however, he realized that one scout’s Eagle project was left unfinished.

Ross Salvo, who was on his way to becoming an Eagle Scout, passed away before he could finish his project. Though he was awarded honorary Eagle Scout after his death, Salvo left an everlasting mark on Poidomani.

“He always had a smile on his face,” Poidomani said. “Like to just keep having a smile on your face when you’re lost in the treacherous woods with only a compass and map to survive, and he was that compass that guided me.”

Using Salvo for motivation, Poidomani created a state-of-the-art shotput throwing field for the student-athletes at Newtown High School. Additionally, he repainted Newtown High School’s culinary department’s snack shack, helping create a clean and school-spirited environment.

When the work was concluded, Poidomani was not just responsible for his own Eagle project but also for Salvo’s unfinished Eagle Scout project. With his family in attendance on Tuesday he was able to share the ceremony not just with Sinapi but with Salvo too.

After graduating high school, both boys head off to college in the fall where they both hope to put the skills they learned from scouts to good use.


Intern Jack Kobrock may be reached through editor@thebee.com.

Michael “Big Mike” Poidomani and Connor Sinapi at their Court of Honor Ceremony. The ceremony at Cullens Youth Association saw each of the boys’ accomplishments officially recognized together. —Darrell Harrington photo
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