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Boy Scout leader remembered with street co-naming

Assistant Scoutmaster Richard Pineiro, the commissioner for the Rockland County District, instructs Derek Feng, the youngest member of Troop One about a bell ceremony. Photo by Christina Santucci
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Boy Scouts and elected officials descended on downtown Flushing Saturday afternoon to commemorate the founder of a Flushing Boy Scouts of America troop with a street co-naming.

In 1905, Daniel Carter Beard started the Sons of Daniel Boone, a youth group he merged with the Boy Scouts’ organization five years later.

“We are here to honor the legacy of Daniel Carter Beard on what would have been his 164th birthday,” City Councilman Peter Koo (D-Flushing) said at the street co-naming.

Beard died at the age of 91 in 1941.

Koo and state Sen. Toby Stavisky (D-Flushing) unveiled a sign co-naming the corner of Northern Boulevard and Farrington Street as “Daniel Carter Beard Memorial Square.”

“This is a great opportunity for people to come together and learn about their community,” Stavisky said. “There is so much history within a few blocks of where we stand.”

After he merged his group with Boy Scouts of America, Beard served as the one of the organization’s National Scout Commissioners for 30 years.

In addition to his work with Boy Scouts, Beard was an illustrator and author by profession.

He was born in Kentucky and later moved to New York City, living in Flushing, where he founded the Sons of Daniel Boone, before he moved to Suffern, N.Y.

“Other people knew him as a leader, the head of the Boy Scouts, as a showman and he certainly was, but I knew him as my uncle,” said Joan Finney Wing, Beard’s great-niece, who attended the ceremony along with her family.

Wing, who now lives in Boston, recalled memories of Beard, who she affectionately remembered as “Uncle Dan.” She said he would always give her gifts such as feathers and beaded moccasins whenever they would see each other.

“He always brought a gift. That’s the kind of person he was,” she said. “He shared of himself and he shared with children particularly. There was a reason for his forming the Boy Scouts, because he and a number of his friends felt that boys in particular needed some help growing [up].”

A number of Boy Scout leaders and groups were also present for the ceremony, including Flushing’s Troop 1, which Beard founded.

“I see him as my ancestor,” said Jonathan Chao, 16, one of Troop 1’s youth leaders, who has been a Boy Scout for five years. “Boy Scouts for me has affected me a lot, and if it wasn’t for Daniel Beard creating this program in the United States, then I don’t know what kind of person I would be.”

Reach reporter Alex Robinson by e-mail at arobinson@cnglocal.com or by phone at 718-260-4566.

Updated 1:02 am, June 30, 2014
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Reader feedback

warren smyth from flushing says:
I was a member of troop 1 when we celerated 25 yeara.

Mart Freeman scout leader then ScoutMaster
Feb. 6, 2017, 10:10 am

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