The Scoutmasters


The Scoutmaster is the adult responsible for working directly with the Scouts to help them create the program for the troop. The Scoutmaster trains boy leaders to run the troop by providing direction, coaching, and support. He is the most important adult leader within a Boy Scout Troop. As Baden Powell said:


"The more responsibility the Scoutmaster gives his patrol leaders, the more they will respond... The most important object in Boy Scout training is to educate, not instruct.”

Charles L. Shaw
Charles L. Shaw was the first Scoutmaster for Troop 273 when it was chartered on March 31, 1942. The Troop was sponsored by St Benedict Joseph Labre Roman Catholic Parish. Scoutmaster Shaw led the Troop during the early years of World War II. Needless to say, it was a challenging time to start and grow a Boy Scout program. Charles continued his inspired leadership of the Troop until 1944, when he was drafted in the Army at the age of 38.
George F. Miller:
George F. Miller took over leadership of the Troop when Charles L. Shaw was drafted during 1944. He was the Scoutmaster for approximately one year, during the final year of World War II. As Scoutmaster, he led the Troop during a period when Scouting enrollment increased and the first Junior Scout Leaders were promoted through the ranks. His dedicated leadership helped the Troop grow and evolve from a wartime environment to post-war years.
John F. Griffin:
John Griffin was Scoutmaster from 1945 through 1952. He served as a Scoutmaster during the post war period all the way through the Korean War. During this time, the Troop experienced additional growth: the Troop now had over 20 Scouts by 1952. It was also during this time, that Uncle Al Moser joined the Troop leadership as Committee member in 1946, after he was discharged from the US Army. Uncle Al would later become the Troop Committee Chairman, a position he held for the next 30 years.
Tom E. Costigan (1929-2008):
Tom Costigan was Scoutmaster from Jun 1950 to November 1952 and September 1954 to March 1963.  The break in service was due to two years of Army service during the Korean War. Tom was the first Troop 273 Scoutmaster to come up from the ranks as a Boy Scout. (He was a charter member joining Troop 273 as a Scout in 1942). Tom led the Troop during a time of explosive growth. During his tenure as Scoutmaster, the Troop started an annual Summer Camp program in 1955 and produced the first Eagle Scouts for Troop 273 in 1956. Tom also formalized many of the Troop's policies, writing many of the Troop SOPs, Summer Camp Packet and Guidebooks. Tom continued his dedicated leadership as Advisor Emeritus for many years after he relinquished his duties a Scoutmaster in 1963.
Bill Welsch (1938-1998)
Bill Welsch was Scoutmaster from March 1963 to 1978 and then from 1986 to 1989. Bill was the Troop's first Eagle Scout. He continued the tradition of a former Boy Scout becoming Scoutmaster as an adult. Bill assumed Scoutmaster duties after a two-year stint with the US Marine Corps. The Troop enjoyed healthy enrollments during Bill's tenure. Tom Costigan remained as an Advisor Emeritus for 25 years after Bill took over. Many Scouts still look at the Troop at this time, under Bill Welsch's leadership, as the "Golden Age" of Troop 273 Scouting. After Bill became Scoutmaster in 1963 he,Tom Costigan and Uncle Al dedicated themselves for the next 30 to 40 years in support of the outstanding Troop 273 Scout program. Bill was named Scoutmaster Emeritus when he relinquished his Scoutmaster duties in 1978, a position that he held until his untimely death in 1998.
Jim Grace, Jr (b1955)
Jim Grace Jr was Scoutmaster from 1978 through 1986. He had been an Assistant Scoutmaster for several years prior to 1978. Jim was the second Eagle Scout from Troop 273 to attain Eagle Rank and then to become Scoutmaster as an adult. Jim led the Troop during a time of healthy enrollments and enabled more Boy Scouts to attain the prestigious Eagle rank. During his tenure, 17 Scouts attained Eagle which was a much larger percentage than the national average. Jim relinquished his Scoutmaster's duties during September 1986, when he moved out of state for employment purposes. 
Steve Murphy (b1960)
Steve Murphy was a Boy Scout in Troop 273 from 1972-1978. Shortly thereafter, he assumed different adult leadership roles including Assistant Scoutmaster and Committee Member. When Jim Grace Jr moved out of state in 1986, Steve took over Scoutmaster on an interim basis from 1986 to 1987, to help complete the program year. Steve demonstrated his continuing dedication to the Troop by serving as an interim Scoutmaster while the Committee looked for a full-time Scoutmaster. In 1987, Bill Welsch returned as Scoutmaster, serving in that position until 1990.
Donald Crispi, Sr (b1939)
Don Crispi, Sr was a Boy Scout from 1950 through 1956. He was a Scout at the same time that Bill Welsch was a Scout. They maintained a life-long friendship ever since that time. From the late 1950's throughout 1997, Don devoted tireless effort in a variety of adult leadership roles in support of the Troop. When Bill Welsch returned in 1987 as Scoutmaster, Don was an Assistant Scoutmaster and served as Bill's "right-hand." When the Welsch family won the NY Lottery during August 1989, Bill decided to move to Florida. Bill transitioned the Troop Scoutmaster position over to Don during 1990. Don then served as Scoutmaster through 1997, the last year that the Troop conducted a formal program and attended Summer Camp. During his tenure, the Troop held the very successful 50th Anniversary Celebration and Dinner in 1992. Don was the last Scoutmaster for Troop 273: he devoted unbelievable time and effort to keep the program going in a time with reduced Scouting enrollments and reduced adult leadership. All the Scouts sincerely thank him for his 40 years of outstanding adult Scouting leadership. (Note: not to be confused with his son, Don Crispi Jr, who was also a member of the Troop and who attained Eagle Rank in 1984. Don Jr, like his father, continued his Scouting experience as an exemplary adult leader.)