Walking through the hiking trails at Timberlin Park, the weekend hikes for
Berlin resident Mason Paul and his family would come to a sudden end when they
approached the creek on Emilia Green Trail with their dogs. The wetlands were impossible
to cross and the family activity would turn into a struggle.
So when it came time for Paul, who just turned 18, to put together his Eagle
Scout candidacy project, he knew exactly what he wanted to do – build a bridge that would
allow for a continuous, safe and enjoyable trek through the trails.
“I never pictured a project of this scale, but as I began talking about it, it
seemed like something I could do and something that would have a positive
impact,” Paul said. “I have always been interested in engineering, so the
project also made sense for me.”
A freshman at the University of Hartford with a major in mechanical
engineering, the project quickly took legs from there. Over a five-month
period, he was able to fundraise the parts for it, obtain all necessary
approvals from planning boards and even solicit friends and other volunteers to
help put together the 22-foot bridge.
With two weekends of work in October, the rest as they say is history.
“It has been impressive to see all he was able to do,” said his mother, Michele
Fischer-Paul. “He’s really made an effort to not only do it, but make sure it
was done right.”
For Mason Paul, the work may simply be a glimpse into what the future holds.
Not only is he an aspiring engineer, but hope to one day work with cars to make
them more eco-friendly and efficient for users. He said he would also consider
additional projects like this in the future.
“It’s not something where I’m looking for recognition,” Paul said. “I love
building things, so my hope is that I could continue to do something like this
for people, things that are fun and help everyone.”
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