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Mic-O-Say Medicine Spirit Runs Deep in These Two

Few members of the Tribe ever advance to the responsibility of Medicine Man, so it’s a bit surprising to find two Hardway, full-rainbow Medicine Men who came into the Tribe as Blood Brothers.  Such is the case with Medicine Man Fast Running Silver Fox and Medicine Man Distant Full Moon, known to the non-Tribal world as Jim Hayes and Kelsie Clark.

Jim and Kelsie were born three days apart, both families were members of United Methodist Church for several generations, and both attended the same Pleasant Hill schools through high school, and then went to Mizzou together, where they shared an apartment. Kelsie recalls that both he and Jim grew up feeling like a part of each others families. “We weren’t biological brothers,” Kelsie says, “but we were brothers.”

On the Scouting side, they both attended Pack 300, earned their Arrows of Light, and bridged up to Troop 300.

Jim and Kelsie pretty much advanced in rank together, although Kelsie earned his Eagle award in 1975 as part of Pappy Grube’s Court of Honor, and Jim earned his the next year in the Honorable Larry Winn, Jr. Class. They both attended the 1977 Jamboree together with Jim serving as a Patrol Leader, and Kelsie his Assistant Patrol Leader.

Now that’s close!!

Jim and Kelsie began the Bartle experience in 1973, camping together with Troop 300 in Fort Fremont. Jim recalls that was the last summer Chief Lone Bear was still alive.

Both remember aspiring to be like the Braves and Warriors in Troop 300. They looked up to the older guys who wore claws. Jim says “I didn’t understand it – just that I wanted to be a part of it.”

Kelsie recalls he saw the older boys and leaders wearing claws and brave pouches and started wondering what this Mic-O-Say thing was all about. Kelsie says, “Of course they would only tell us a little. I knew I wanted to be a part of this special group. Little did I know at the time what a significant impact that becoming a Tribesman would have on me and others.”

Kelsie recalls several First-Year-Camper experiences centered on the Tribe. One was the Shaman’s instructions to not run in camp and stay away from the white rocks. The other was Call Night.

New Warriors (Left to Right): Front Row: Dean Heugel, Tim McCoy, James Hood; Back Row: Kelsie Clark, Jim Hayes

The two entered the Tribe as Braves and Blood Brothers in 1975. Their watch fires are now underwater down by the old Riverfront. They advanced to Warrior together in 1976, and received most of their paint together on the same nights through Sachem. Kelsie recalls that night in 1983. “Medicine Man Mad Drums (Whitey Koogler) called us and named us. I was told later that he had requested to call us that night because we were Blood Brothers. He thought that was special and made some mention of it when he read our bios. It was special.”

They continued to advance through white paint, though not at the same time, until both eventually heard the call to become Medicine Men.

They received their elevations to Medicine Man at different ceremonies, but were with each other when they heard the call. Jim says it was the ultimate honor to receive “a life achievement to be called to stand in the same place as those guys that I had always looked up to – Dick, Louie, Whitey, Will Krahenbuhl, Rick Boeshaar.” Kelsie echoes his admiration for those Tribesmen.

Jim vividly remembers his Call Night. Pappy Grube “tested” him – something he still considers “pretty cool.” The Tribal leaders that influenced Jim were Pappy, Dick and Louie Chandler and Whitey Koogler. Jim recalls, “Dick always made ceremonies special – soft spoken, was able with words to make me feel the presence of the MOS brothers that had gone before us…Roe, J.D. (Hammontree), and the others. He made you feel like you were part of the inner-circle of Mic-O-Say.”

Both served on Bartle staff from 1979 to 1982 in Camp Wigwam/Lone Star, and in 1983 at Camp Naish. Kelsie served another year on Bartle staff in 1984 as Pioneer Trails Director, while Jim heard the call to begin his career at Sprint. Kelsie started his career in engineering the next year.

The Mic-O-Say influence stayed strong in both of these men as they grew in age and wisdom. Their Scoutmaster, Harry Dyke, kept the two active in the Troop as they graduated high school and went off to college in Columbia. Jim recalls that Scoutmaster Dyke opened doors in the district, made sure they attended the Tribal Feast, and encouraged them generally to stay active. Kelsie recalls Mr. Dyke “had a way of ‘needing our help’ when we were available. They assisted at Arrowhead District’s New Scoutmaster Training while home on weekends. Both assisted Troop 5 in Columbia while attending Mizzou. Both joined the Arrowhead District Training team after college and eventually became District training chairs. Later, Jim served as Council Training Chair and now as Vice President Program and Kelsie now as District Commissioner.

Kelsie says, “who knew that Mr. Dyke’s ‘weekend invitation’ would spark a couple of decades of involvement in various training functions?”

Jim recalls his Scouting and Mic-O-Say friends have been a consistent thread throughout his life. He and Kelsie were on staff at the same time as Lester Ham, Scott Hess, Jim Todd, Wayne Stewart, Russ and Steve Nichol, Rick Boeshaar, Jimmy Clark, Danny Smock, Mark Gotzon, Doug Combs, Ed Hubert – just to name a few. Jim and Kelsie later returned as commissioners and found more life-long friends in Aaron Guest, Bill and Bob Huston, and Scott Smith. All have become great life friends.

Jim Hayes reconnected with Jim Todd when Todd built his house next door to the Hayes’. Todd saw Hayes mowing his yard with an old staff shirt only to find out they were on staff at the same time – Hayes in Lone Star, Todd in Sawmill.

Jim says the core of MOS are the principles we live in our hearts, and those have served as his guideposts in living his life. He continues to reflect on those principles as his life changes.

Kelsie reflects those sentiments. “(These principles) are a cornerstone of how to live life and often take on even more meaning when I listen to a called Brave or called Warrior (in She-She-Be),” Kelsie says. “I remember how hard it was to talk about some of these things when I was that age. Sharing with these young men how (the core values of Mic-O-Say) can change their lives and thinking how they have guided me in mine is especially rewarding.”

Two Blood Brothers and Medicine Men

Jim also says, “Mic-O-Say is a brotherhood, a shared purpose. The pride and purpose that I have when I put on my claws is hard to describe. Knowing that the Tribe has deep meaning for our members and has positively influenced the character and leadership development of so many youth (and adults!) is awesome…. [We as Tribal leaders need] to be the example, to serve and help guide the future of our organization.”

Kelsie echoes those sentiments. “It’s a lasting brotherhood. The bonds we share with other tribesmen cross over generations and age differences. I have lost touch with most of the friends I had in high school and college but the friendships I’ve made with brother tribesmen and camp staff members over the years has been lasting. Even though we may not have served on staff or became tribesmen at the same time and may be of very different ages, the common bond of being a tribesman is strong.

Jim and Kelsie are models for every new member of the Tribe to watch and follow – whether young or old. These Blood Brothers represent the true meaning of Mic-O-Say!

Tribesman Profile: Kevin Ferrett

by: Tom Volek

Kevin Ferrett

Kevin Ferrett

Sagamore Shimmering Star

Scouting and Mic-O-Say touched Kevin Ferrett’s life in many ways.  He still has his claws above his dresser at home, and sees them every morning as he heads out the door for work.  Kevin currently is an instructional designer for Sprint University, the educational arm of the Kansas City-based telecommunications giant.  He credits Scouting and the Tribe with providing him the skills for his highly successful career.

Kevin still remembers his early Scouting experiences that taught him perseverance and to believe in himself, perhaps embodied in a troop campout in subzero temperatures.  He and the boys built a full-size igloo and two of the Scouts slept in it overnight.  Kevin says the two inside the igloo slept warmer than the rest of the group.

Kevin spent two years as Senior Patrol Leader of his troop. He then served on on camp staff at Bartle.  Both experiences taught him how to teach, motivate and earn the loyalty of others, building skills he now uses daily.  He says such leadership positions in Scouting instill in the boys “a belief that they can do whatever they set their minds to. This goes for anything from believing you can obtain a job or career you want to believing you can fix the dryer when it breaks down.”

One of Kevin’s favorite Scouting memories is his first year on staff at Bartle in 1981.  He was 16 years old.  He served on the Camp Frontier dining hall staff, made Warrior and Firebuilder, and capped the summer with a trek at Philmont.  “What a great summer,” Kevin says.

Kevin served on staff every summer for the next 11 summers, moving from the dining hall through Conservation, MOS Counselor, Program Director and MOS Advisor. Kevin is known in Tribal circles today as Sagamore Shimmering Star.

Kevin recalls that every time he received a paint elevation, his camp director would call Kevin’s dad in advance.  Kevin says his dad then would drive to Osceola (without Kevin knowing) for the ceremony.  Kevin would get elevated and afterwards the crowd would gather around him for handshakes and hugs.  Once the crowd thinned out, Kevin would see his dad standing there, waiting “to put a big hug on me.”  Kevin’s dad passed away a few years ago, and this is one of the memories Kevin holds onto about his dad, about his family, and about Mic-O-Say.

Kevin reflects on what he misses most about Bartle. “The camaraderie and shared team spirit is the thing I miss the most.  The dining hall songs and stunts, the Call Nights, just sitting around the staff area on a hot summer night,” he says.

He says he found the satisfaction that comes from serving others through camp staff.  Kevin challenges staffers to take it seriously.  “For those who really live it while they are on staff, there is a shared sense of purpose toward a higher good that is not found in many other places in life,” he says.

Kevin’s staff days are over for now.  He now is married with three sons, ages 7, 8 and 18.  His 8-year-old is a Cub Scout, and Kevin is active in the Pack as a parent.

Kevin still sees his claws every morning and reflects on what Mic-O-Say means to him.  “The commitments we make in Mic-O-Say can last a lifetime,” he says.  “They remind me of great times on camp staff, but also remind me of my commitments.”  He says he looks at those commitments differently over time, but they are still there.

Kevin Ferrett is another great example of what “building better boys” is all about.  He learned the basic values and skills as a Scout that have propelled him into responsibility and leadership as an adult.