Eagle Scout project creates new obstacle course for police K9
For his Eagle Scout project, Sherwood's Andrew Fujii wanted to do something different.
So after checking out the city of Sherwood's website on possible Eagle Scout projects, he came across something that caught his eye -- building a new obstacle course for Irma, the Sherwood Police Department's K9. After connecting with Tammy Steffans, the city's volunteer coordinator, Andrew went out and checked the old obstacle course and discovered it in major disrepair.
The course, which is located in back of the Sherwood Police Department, is where Irma and her handler, Officer Corey Jentzsch, frequently train.
Soon Andrew – who is a member of a Troop 423 out of Tigard as well as a member of the Butte Creek Scout Ranch Venture Crew 0492 (Wrangler Crew) -- and his father, Taka, were busy drawing up the plans and collecting the needed materials.
"He was very excited to do it," said Lisa Gossett, Andrew's mother. "We had really great people to work with."
Andrew and his friends initially did work at Building Materials Resources in Sherwood, cleaning up and pruning vegetation in exchange for some of the needed supplies. Soon other donations, some of them anonymously, began rolling in.
Before long Andrew, other Scouts and volunteers began collecting materials. Some of those volunteers were from the Bowmen Family Foundation, a Sherwood-based group that honors fallen SHS Bowmen fallen heroes including Sgt. Jason Goodding, the Seaside officer who was killed last year, and Capt. Aaron Contreras, who was killed in 2003 while serving as a helicopter pilot in Iraq.
"The Bowmen Family Foundation came out on the morning of the build," said Gossett.
In the end, Andrew came up with five different types of obstacle course types with seven pieces in all.
While some of the pieces were pre-assembled, everything was put together for an unveiling and celebration on May 6 at the K9 Obstacle Course in back of the Sherwood Police Department.
The highlight, said Gossett, was when Officer Jentzsch showed up with Irma, a Belgian Malinois.
"She ran the course in front of him," Gossett said, noting that the whole experience has been eye-opening for her son.
Officer Jentzsch said he thinks the obstacles are great, adding to Irma's health, agility and training.
"Several of the obstacles help with our annual testing as well," he said. "They will be a great benefit to Irma and the surrounding K9 units in the county."
Gossett said the Goodding family was extremely helpful as well, including Jason Goodding's sister Jenn who was "150 percent" supportive of the project, according to Gossett.
Among the donors/sponsors of the project were the Bowmen Family Foundation, Building Materials Resource, the city of Sherwood, the Goodding Family, Seabold Construction, the Sherwood Police Department, the Sherwood Police Foundation and the Order of the Eastern Star.
"These are the folks/groups that really brought life to this project early on and reminded Andy of what happens when a community pulls together for a community project," said Gossett. "It was truly heartwarming … the kind emails … the kudos to him for his efforts and was incredibly motivating. Almost everyone came out on 'build day' to see the project and meet him and take photos. It also demonstrated the great love this community has for its Police Department."