Ellen DeGeneres has given gay Boy Scout
Ryan Andresen a $20,000 college scholarship.
Appearing on DeGeneres' daytime talk
show, Andresen, who lives near San Francisco, explained that he was
denied an Eagle Scout award by his troop leader after he completed
the work needed to earn it because he's gay.
Becoming an Eagle Scout has been “a
lifelong dream for me,” Andresen told DeGeneres.
For his leadership service project,
Andresen created a tolerance wall at his middle school.
“I've been through a lot of bullying
in my life,” he said. “So, I went to my middle school and I
created a wall of 288 tiles and I told all of the students that we're
making a wall to combat bullying and show that we love everyone.”
Andresen's mother, Karen Andresen,
launched a petition asking the Scouts to give her son the pin he
The group A Good Turn also has rallied
to Andresen's side, organizing a pin drive for the teen.
One-hundred and seventy people so far
have pledged to send Andresen their Eagle Scout pins, Andresen said.
In presenting Andresen his giant
$20,000 check, DeGeneres said: “I'm proud of you. I'm really proud
of you.” (The video is embedded on this page. Visit
our video library for more videos.)
The Boy Scouts of America reiterated
its ban on openly gay scouts and leaders in July.
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