Section Chief (1989, 1989-1990)
The current Section W6W Chief’s bonnet is dedicated to Roy Anderson, who served most of the two terms as Section W4C Chief. The preceding Chief’s bonnet that was retired in 2016 was introduced by Roy during his term as Chief. That bonnet is now stored at the Kiva at the Heard Scout Pueblo in Phoenix, Arizona.
Roy was killed in a boating accident in 1995 at the age of 24.
Bonnet Dedication Letter from his Sister, Helen:
Good evening. I am honored to speak about Boy Scouts and my brother, Roy Anderson the 89-90 section chief. Boy Scouts and The Order of the Arrow was very important to him. He made amazing friends, friends that I still have contact with today, 21 years after his death. He almost quit the boy scouts, what a travesty that would have been for all of us. My mother had signed him up for summer camp and since she had paid for it, he had to go. After that he could quit. At the end of camp the day before we were to pick him up he called home and asked to stay on and work for the rest of the summer. That summer he met lifelong friends who became his mentors, guides, and best friends. He worked that summer and every summer after that until he graduated high school. He didn’t just work the camp, he ended up becoming a lifeguard, running the pool, becoming camp chief. To get his eagle scout he grabbed a group of his high school football buddies to help him complete it. He was always able to get along with everyone. Everyone loved him. He was a good role model. He was always prepared, in every situation we was able to adapt and adjust. He went on to run the radio stations at national conventions including NOACs, Philmont Trek’s and Jamboree’s.
As a big brother he was the best. He was my protector, my best friend, and my guide. He made sure I didn’t copy his mistakes. He also pushed me beyond what I thought I could do, he believed in me more than anyone else. He taught me to work hard, play hard and make sure to have fun. He knew how to have fun and to make sure everyone was safe. My memories of Roy with all his Boy Scout adventures is one reason my son wants to stay in scouts. If it weren’t for Roy and his experience in scouts I would not have done everything I could to make sure my son joined scouts. Boy Scouts has given my son and I many opportunities to make memories and he is only 10. Every year we go to a mom and son camp weekend at a Boy Scout camp in WI, this was our first year we didn’t get rain inside our tent. Every year we have had fun and made memories, something Roy always did. It is also a time where he learns more about his uncle, to whom he is named. I am excited for my son to learn the same valuable life skills, make fun memories and make great friends just like Roy.
I thank you for the opportunity for me to share about my brother. I hope all of you are able to learn life skills, make wonderful memories, and make amazing friends you will have your entire life. Boy Scouts gives you the opportunity to find great people and make great memories. Cherish this time and enjoy it.
Helen (Anderson) Moen
Bonnet Dedication Letter from Jack Stephens:
When James Arriola asked me to write a few words about 1989-1990 Section Chief Roy Anderson I meditated on how I might describe Roy to a generation of people who never knew him and do justice to those who loved him. I’ll do my best.
Roy was funny, loveable, kind, and trustworthy.
Roy was section chief during a time of great transition. Just prior to his election, women were finally allowed to become members of the Order. Roy was glad to see this justice done. He was excited because this meant that, at last, Cookie Smith could be bestowed the Vigil Honor and a lot of other women who had already been contributing so much to Scouting and the Order of the Arrow could finally become members.
Roy loved history and we got to witness history in the making together. I’ll never forget it. During the 1989 conclave Roy and I were a little late getting to the evening show. We shared a dorm room and while getting dressed in our uniforms we had CNN on the TV. News reports were coming in that people were taking sledgehammers to the Berlin Wall. My father had served during the Korean War and both of Roy’s parents served in Vietnam. We sat together weeping silent tears as we witnessed the end of the Cold War happen before our eyes. We had the honor of breaking this news to the conclave that Saturday night.
Roy was kind and generous. He was quick to help the newest Scout find his way around, get a classroom set up, or clean the mess hall. He was usually the last one out of the building. He believed that if you weren’t having fun you were doing it wrong, including meetings.
In 1988 when I was re-elected section chief the bonnet I wore, was worn out, ragged and the section needed a new one. It had been worn for ages before Mike Hoffman got it, then Terry Meier, Jeff McCormick and me. I have no idea how old it was. After Roy was elected section chief in January 1989 we’d completed the bonnet passing ceremony, Roy told me he didn’t want that old thing anywhere near his head again. One of his first orders of business was to have a new one made. Members of the Wipala Wiki Lodge hand built a new section chiefs bonnet and donated it to the section. He made sure that it would have the same magical feature as the previous one: the wearer’s head would swell to fit it perfectly.
Roy loved our traditions and rituals as much as anyone who’s ever loved being on a ceremony team. Roy was fun and he truly cared about people including his family, his fraternity brothers, and members of the Order of the Arrow all across the country.
Roy was an Eagle Scout, Vigil Honor member, and Founders Award recipient. He was chief of Wipala Wiki Lodge, a two-term section chief, and narrowly lost the election for Western Region Chief by one vote. He served on staff at summer camp, numerous section conclaves, several NLS’s and NOACs, the National Jamboree and the Philmont Trek. He was a graduate of Arizona State University and coached pee-wee football in his community.
Roy was also a true friend. The kind of friend who welcomed you at any hour, day or night. He was the one you could call at 1am, and back in the 80’s before cell phones that was an even bigger deal than it is now. You had to actually get out of bed and go to the kitchen or living room to pick up the phone. And when it rang it woke the whole house up. But Roy was that kind of friend and his parents knew it and understood. A lot of guys who had broken up with their girlfriend or got fired from their job went to Roy for a listening ear and a compassionate heart. He was thoughtful and wise and knew when to share an insightful comment or friendly joke.
Roy offered the kind of friendship that made you feel like you were the most important person to him. He died in a boating accident at the age of 24 and when Mike Minnis and I were standing together at his funeral we realized that there were about 5 or 6 of us who personally thought of Roy as our own best friend. We were all friends with each other too, but Roy was at the center of the circle. We revolved around him. That’s who he was. He loved us unconditionally, and that’s how he was loved in return.
I’m glad that you have opted for a more formal retiring of this bonnet because so many good young men like Roy have worn it. It’s worth remembering their contribution to Scouting, the Order, and the Section. May you dedicate your lives to cheerful service, as my friend Roy Anderson did. Thank you.
~ Jack Stephens
Section Chief, 1987-1988 (W5A, W4C)
National Chief, 1989