By Mrs. Mildred Harrison
(updated for 2017)
In 1973, the Webelos of Pack 726 were looking for a Troop to join in Castro Valley. Mr. Harrison was their Leader. He took the Webelos to visit several Troops. Not finding one they wanted to join, the parents decided to start their own Troop. There is a lot of paperwork involved to start a Troop, but start we did with five parents as leaders: Mr. and Mrs. Ginty, Mr. Murray, and Mr. and Mrs. Harrison. The Scouts were Tom Augusta, David Callies, Rick Murray, Paul Harrison and Paul Warrin, all sixth graders from Marshall School. These ten people became the charter members of Troop 726.
The five Scouts had two induction ceremonies. A Troop in San Leandro adopted us and gave us a lot of support our first year. They included our induction with their Court of Honor. Our Scoutmaster had a motorhome and the Scouts and their families all piled in for the drive to San Leandro. The second induction took place at Marshall School in the multipurpose room a tour first Troop Meeting.
Since we needed money to buy things for the Troop, the Pack loaned us $75.00, which we repaid once we started to earn money for the Troop. To raise the funds for the equipment we required we had paper drives every other month alternating with the Pack. In 1974, we purchased our present Troop flag! We were very proud that we had earned the money.
Mr. Ginty, the Scoutmaster, and Mr. Harrison took the Troop to Royaneh for our first summer camp. We now had increased to eight Scouts, 100% uninformed. In 1974, the camp fee, parents you won't believe this, was $37.00 for the week.
We had a lot of fun outings and overnights to such places as the Presidio, Camp Hermes, Mt. Diablo State Park, canoeing on the Russian River, hiking the Fages Trail, a 50 miler in Mt. Lassen National Park, a four-day backpacking trip in the Sierras, snow camping, Scout-O-Ramas and Camp-O-Rees, where we had the reputation for tying the fastest giant clove hitch. The District Executive asked our Scoutmaster to choose two of our Scouts to appear in a children's program on Channel 2 to show how to pitch a tent properly. Troop 726 was invited to present the colors at one of "A's"games. That was quite a thrill.
Brownseas was started in 1976, we sent two Scouts to the first session. That was the year of the Bicentennial Celebration. Our Troop made special neckerchiefs for the occasion and participated when the Freedom Train visited Oakland. In 1978, two Scouts attended the National Jamboree held at Moraine State Park in Pennsylvania. The tour included a stay in D.C., Virginia, and Pennsylvania. 1980 Saw Mr. Hill, Mr. Harrison, and three Scouts drive to Philmont Scout Ranch in New Mexico. On the way, they stopped at Hoover Dam, Las Vegas, and the Grand Canyon. On the return trip, the highlight was a visit to the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs.
From 1980 to 1986, we had about eight Scoutmasters whose terms were of short duration. In 1986, we were down to two Scouts and two leaders. Enter Mr. Marcus Krause and his son John. Once more, we were off to a good start under Scoutmaster Krause! We increased in Scouts and Leaders for the next eleven years. In 1997 Mr. Mike Gentile took over and had an excellent run for the next 12 years. In 2009, Mr. Avery took over as our scoutmaster and with his leadership Troop 726 prospered. During the winter of 2016, the scout's went on their annual Winter Big Adventure, this year at Death Valley National Park. Recently, in 2017 Mr. Galagar took over as our scoutmaster and remains till now. At the moment Troop 726 is full of active scouts and parents hoping to make a difference.