Orange County Buddhist Church’s Boy Scout Troop 578 has announced five new Eagle Scouts.
Kyle Cardella, Kai Kotake, Tyson Sakamoto, Kevin Wong and Bradley Nishida were recognized at an event held May 22 at OCBC in Anaheim.
Only 4 percent of scouts obtain the rank of Eagle. To be considered for the highest award a Boy Scout may earn, a candidate must be active in his troop, hold a leadership position, earn at least 21 merit badges (including 13 Eagle required badges), complete a leadership service project benefiting his local community, and receive letters of recommendation.
The rank of Eagle represents many years of dedicated effort, and the successful completion of a long process that started when the young man became a Boy Scout. It is a demonstration of how people, working together, can truly help mold a young man with a solid sense of leadership, citizenship, and responsibility.
Following are profiles of Troop 578’s new Eagles.
Kyle Alan Cardella, son of Paul Cardella and Diane Suzuki, is a graduate of El Dorado High School. He participated in four years of cross country and track & field as well as the school’s own Key Club and CSF program. Additionally, he serves as a historian of the Educators of Orange County and as an active member of the Anti-Fire Campaign.
Kyle’s scouting career began when he joined Pack 578 as a Bear Scout, and crossed over a few years later into Troop 578. During his time in the troop, he served as patrol scribe, patrol historian, patrol quartermaster, assistant patrol leader, patrol leader, troop outdoor ethics guide, assistant senior patrol leader, and senior patrol leader.
His favorite scouting events included backpacking, shotgun shooting, Summer Camps (at Camp Three Falls, Camp Fiesta Island, and Lost Valley), Camporee, Invitational Field Day, and deep-sea fishing.
For Kyle’s Eagle Project, he constructed a storage shed for El Dorado High School. His inspiration for this project came from his teammate’s dissatisfaction with their current storage situation. The old, dilapidated storage units were cumbersome and inconvenient. The shed he made addressed the old storage’s flaws, meaning safer and more efficient storage for the sports teams of El Dorado for years to come.
Kyle feels a great deal of gratitude to Troop 578 and its constituents for helping him attain his proficiency in leadership. Additionally, he appreciates the life lessons he learned from his scoutmasters, assistant scoutmasters, and fellow scouts. Kyle also is grateful to the troop families as well as OCBC itself for providing the support him in his scouting endeavors.
In the fall, Kyle plans to pursue a major in general biology at Cornell University.
Kai Murayama Kotake, son of Yasuko Murayama Kotake and John Hiroshi Kotake, is a graduate of Woodbridge High School. He was a member of the Woodbridge Marching Band and also a member of Butokuden Kendo Club.
Kai feels very grateful to Troop 578 and his rewarding experiences with his fellow scouts and leaders. He did not originally start his scouting career at T578, but rather at his local elementary school as a Bear Scout. Since then he has served in the positions of patrol historian, patrol quartermaster, patrol leader, and patrol instructor.
His favorite scouting events include Japan Jamboree, Matthew Maeshiro’s Eagle Project in Belize, as well as Northern Tier. He also has participated in other events such as the annual deep-sea fishing trip, shotgun shooting camp, and backpacking trips.
For his Eagle Project, Kai built speaker carts for his high school. The carts were designed to house newly purchased speakers for the Woodbridge High School Entertainment Corps. The organization needed the carts to transport the speakers to and from various events, including marching band tournaments, percussion competitions, etc. Kai’s project advisor was Troop 578 ASM Sutai Wu.
Throughout his time at Troop 578, Kai learned many valuable lessons, such as the importance of leading by example. He also developed more confidence in himself.
In the fall, Kai plans on attending the University of Hawaii Hilo, where he plans on studying agriculture.
Tyson Masa Sakamoto, son of Jeff and Carol Sakamoto, is a graduate of Huntington Beach High School. During high school, Tyson has been heavily involved in music programs such as Marching Band and the Academy of the Performing Arts. He has also taken numerous AP courses and was involved with NHS and the Current Events Club.
Tyson first started scouting in first grade as a Tiger Scout for Cub Scouts Pack 578, and later crossed over to Boy Scouts Troop 578. He has held many positions such as patrol leader, instructor, assistant senior patrol leader, and senior patrol leader. His favorite memories are High Adventure treks hiking at Philmont Scout Ranch in New Mexico and canoeing at Northern Tier in Canada. Some of his favorite yearly campouts are snow camp and shotgun shooting.
For his Eagle Project, Tyson created two multipurpose utility carts for Orange County Buddhist Church in Anaheim. These carts would be used to help move heavy items around the OCBC campus, especially for festivals like Obon. He would like to thank his advisor Sutai Wu for his guidance during the creation of the project.
Tyson would also like to thank Troop 578, OCBC, all the adult leaders, and his parents for helping him in his scouting journey. He plans to attend UC Riverside majoring in computer engineering in the fall.
Kevin Nariaki Wong, son of Kim Wong and Julia Arai Wong, is a graduate from Ocean View High School, where he participated in the International Baccalaureate certification program. He was also a member of the Rotary Club, where held the position of treasurer. Kevin was active in sports. He swam four years and was named academic scholar in both varsity cross country and varsity swimming. Kevin was awarded the Most Valuable Swimmer in his final year at OVHS, where he was a finalist in the 100 backstroke at league finals. Kevin was named Senior of the Month in March 2021 and Athlete of the Month in October 2019.
Kevin was involved in the Orange Coast Optimist Youth Club, where he held an officer position all six years. He held the position of president in his senior year, chairing the Back to school supply collection and KEI (Keiro) Sakura Gardens Holiday Bags project. He was awarded an OCO Club Scholarship 2021.
Kevin started as a Tiger Scout for Cub Scout Pack 578 in first grade and has been involved in scouts for the past 12 years, holding the positions of troop scribe, historian, quartermaster, patrol leader and, in his final year, senior patrol leader. Kevin’s favorite scouting events include Nippon Jamboree 2018 in Suzu City, summer camp at Cherry Valley, the Northern Tier High Adventure Trek, and canoeing from Minnesota to Ontario, Canada.
For Kevin’s Eagle Project, he led a group of boys to construct a taiko shelf for the OCO Kibou Taiko Group. His inspiration for this project came from his taiko sensei Judi Kaminishi, allowing him to find a love for taiko drumming. Through the construction of the taiko shelves, Kevin hoped that he would be able to maintain the condition of the drums for future generations and continue the practice of traditional Japanese drumming.
Kevin is very thankful to have been advised by Sutai Wu throughout the construction of this project. He would also like to thank Glenn Tanaka for his generous donation to his Eagle Project.
Kevin would like to personally thank OCBC, Troops 578, the adult leaders, and his family for giving him such a great opportunity in the world of scouting. He plans to attend UC Irvine with a major in aerospace engineering this fall.
Bradley Takuya Nishida, son of Cynthia Nishimoto-Nishida and Michael Nishida, is a graduate of Cerritos High School. Bradley participated in the two-year Career & Technical Education Teacher Track at Cerritos High School and is now interested in pursuing a career path in film production at Cerritos College this fall.
After initially starting in Cub Scout Pack 578 in the second grade, Bradley crossed over to Boy Scout Troop 578 in the sixth grade and was an active member for the last seven years. After crossing over to the Boy Scouts, Bradley joined the Falcon patrol. Some of the positions he has held were patrol scribe, quartermaster, historian, outdoor ethics guide, troop outdoor ethics guide, and assistant senior patrol leader.
Bradley’s favorite events were fishing at Rock Creek and Snow Camp. His fondest memory of scouting is participating in the Nippon Jamboree and summiting Mount Fuji in 2018. Bradley was recently awarded the Hanano Award in memory of the late Ryo Hanano for participating in the Rock Creek campout, camping 100 nights and hiking 100 miles.
Bradley chose the Orange County Buddhist Church as his Eagle Project beneficiary as he has been a lifelong member participating in Sunday school, youth activities, sports, and scouts. For his Eagle Project, Bradley built a locking magnetic bulletin board for the recently renovated gymnasium at OCBC.
Bradley sincerely appreciates all of the advice, support, and loyalty from troop adult leaders, families, alumni, and the OCBC sangha.