Vienna teenager Griffin Howland was recently awarded the Boy Scouts of America National Court of Honor's Heroism Award for helping save his golf instructor who collapsed on the course on a hot summer day.
On July 7, 2011, Griffin, then 14, was playing golf with his instructor, Benny Navarro, 64, when Navarro collapsed on the course. Using scouting skills that he learned in a Wilderness First Aid course, Griffin checked Navarro's pulse and breathing, determining both were irregular.
When Navarro regained consciousness, Griffin, along with other golfers on the course, helped transfer him to a golf cart and transported him back to the clubhouse. Emergency responders treated Navarro on scene.
"I'm fine now," Navarro said. "Griffin ended up getting me off the golf course. He was able to get me back to the pro shop. Griffin was very helpful in taking care of me."
In addition to being helpful and knowing how to respond, Navarro, who has known Griffin for years, said his student has been very humble about the award and the experience.
"Griffin is always humble," he said. "He’s a very good kid, a very fine kid."
At the time of the emergency, Griffin Howland was a Star Scout in Troop 1539, sponsored by American Legion Post 180 of Vienna.
The Heroism Award, presented to Griffin on Dec. 4 at Faith Baptist Church, is a rare award in the scouting community. In 2011, only 121 of these medals were presented nationally. According to the Boy Scout's of America website, more than 2.7 million youth members were affliated with the organization at the end of last year.
Griffin is the son of David and Sandra Howland.