By Shawn Chitnis

BRIGHTON, Colo. (CBS4) – An 14-year-old boy completing his Eagle Scout project is helping local fire departments get rid of old fire hoses — and helping the Wild Animal Sanctuary at the same time. He’s using the hoses to create hammocks for their animals.


“At the beginning of this project, I told my mom I really wanted to do something with the animals,” said Payton Crawford, an eighth grade student preparing to become an Eagle Scout.

His mother contacted a variety of animal nonprofits and the Sanctuary told her they have asked Eagle Scouts in the past to complete this project. Crawford was excited to take it on himself.

“It’s just something different that I wanted to try out,” said Crawford. “Give them a better life because they don’t have the luxury we do.”

The Sanctuary in Keenesburg uses the hammocks to help older lions, tigers, and leopards.


Crawford has so many hoses from various departments that he can make different sizes for many animals.

Some of the hammocks are made out of hoses that are 78 inches to 96 inches in length. The pieces are heavy but with help he can weave them together and bolt the hoses together. It takes about two hours to complete one hammock.


“I will never be able to carry one of these by myself,” he said.

Eagle Scout projects require troops to complete a task that benefits others and has a lasting impact. Crawford knows the animals will enjoy his work well after he finishes this project.

“The sanctuary is a nonprofit organization and so helping them in any way would make me feel really good,” he said. “It’s worthwhile, it’s fun, it’s fun building these things.”

*Editor’s note: A previous version of this story stated Crawford was 11 years old.

Shawn Chitnis

Comments (3)
  1. David Benson says:

    The average age of a boy to achieve Eagle Scout, is 17 years old. Either someone is cheating here, or Scouting has really turned into a total wussy activity. No one was working on Eagle, at 11, when I was in Scouting.

  2. Kristofer K. Wustrow says:

    I’m pretty sure that this Scout troop isn’t following the rules: a Scout must serve in each rank for a set period of time (ranks of Tenderfoot, Second Class, First Class, Star, Life) — I think 6 months min in each rank. Thus, it is impossible for an 11 year old to be an Eagle candidate.

  3. Penny Turvill says:

    Wait…11 years old, Eagle Scout, eighth grade? Either this kid is an absolute prodigy, or something is amiss in this story.

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