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Our History

John Forrest

Profile - John Forrest

John (Jock) Forrest was inducted as an Ordeal Member into Chappegat Lodge (now Ktemaque) near New Rochelle, New York in 1952, earned his Brotherhood in1953, and was recognized with the Vigil Honor in 1960.

Jock was a member of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (M.I.T.) Alpha Phi Omega (APO) chapter where, after earning a Master’s of Science degree in Political Science, he was deeply impressed with the work of a younger member, Ray Petit. The two became life-long friends and as highly energetic organizer and manager, Jock shared much of Ray’s work with a larger audience. Jock served as an early contributor to many Scouting Service Exchange (SEE) projects including the Election Ceremony and procedures revisions, and the editing and development of the Handbook for Ceremonial Teams, and other projects.

From 1961 to 1977 John Forrest served in the United States Army, including an assignment in the Advanced Research Projects Agency’s (DARPA) Vietnam field office, eventually earning the rank of Major. For over four years in the mid 1960s, while stationed in Vietnam, Jock was in charge of the US government’s Scouting Project office, organizing Scouting units throughout South Vietnam. His unreserved devotion to his nation was recognized with various awards, including the Bronze Star, the Meritorious Service Medal, and the Joint Service Commendation (each with oak leaf clusters) as well as the Army Commendation Medal and Air Medal.

After returning from Vietnam, Jock was instrumental in the transition of the APO SEE project into what became the Ceremonial Advisory Group, the management of early NOAC Ceremonial Team and Inductions Training, including, in 1976, the coaching of the first team to perform the new pre-Ordeal Ceremony for the National OA Committee (resulting in its eventual approval), and the development of the OA’s Unit Representative program.

Forrest is on the far right of this photo.

His Scouting service has been characterized by his tireless devotion and high levels of energy, and has been recognized by the Order of the Arrow’s Distinguished Service Award (1977), the Silver Beaver, the God and Service Medal and Founder’s Award.