Eagle Scout completes park project
|Jesse Ramirez stands on the bridge he built at Susanville Ranch Park as his Eagle Scout project. Photos submitted|
|Pete Heimbigner, deputy director of the Lassen County Public Works Department, and Jesse Ramirez work on Ramirez’s Eagle Scout project at Susanville Ranch Park.|
Sept. 17, 2013 — Jesse Ramirez of Susanville’s Boy Scout Troop 159 led a crew of volunteers to rebuild the bridge at the Susanville Ranch Park that burned down last year. The bridge was originally built as an Eagle project.
In 2007, Jesse’s older brother, Eli, rebuilt the bridge deck and railings as his Eagle project. When Jesse heard the sad news that the bridge had been destroyed he knew what his project needed to be.
Jesse contacted Joel Rathje to express his interest. The initial thought was to rebuild the bridge to its original design. It was determined that an engineer-designed bridge would be more suitable and the county agreed to fund the cost of the bridge. The prefabricated kit was ordered in the fall and it was a matter of waiting for the bridge supplies to arrive.
The bridge kit was delivered in the late spring. Jesse’s big task was finding a way to lift the three 1,600 pound deck panels onto the existing abutments. Jack Beterbide volunteered his time and equipment to make the first phase of this project possible.
“Construction went fairly smoothly under the guidance of my two mentors, Pete Heimbigner and Joel Rathje,” Ramirez said. “With the help of many volunteers the project was completed in two weekends. Even the discovery that the wrong railing bolts were sent was only a minor setback. My project coach, Bruce Davie, found some bolts in his shop that allowed us to temporarily attach the railings so the bridge would be safe until the right parts came in.”
Jesse has completed all the requirements for Eagle Scout and has submitted his paperwork for review.
“I am glad I had the opportunity to work on this project,” Ramirez said. “I learned that being a leader takes patience and a willingness to listen to others. I hope everyone who visits the Susanville Ranch Park enjoys it.”
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