Born on September 15, 1927, Skip grew up in Seneca Falls, New York. He served as a radar man in the US Navy in 1947 and 1948 and sailed around the world aboard the USS Lloyd Thomas. He worked at Eastman Kodak for 30 years, making film emulsion at Kodak Park. After retiring, he and his wife split their time between the Rochester area and Fort Pierce, Florida. Each summer for more than six decades, he spent at least one week at Boy Scout Camp Babcock-Hovey, near Ovid, New York. One of Skip’s proudest accomplishments was receiving lifetime membership in the prestigious “Order of the Arrow,” in recognition of his distinguished service as a Scout leader. Skip’s Vigil name was Nuwingi translating to “The Willing One”. He was a lifelong fan of the Brooklyn Dodgers, even after they moved to Los Angeles. His interests also included golf, the stock market, crossword puzzles and chess. Skip died August 29, 2010.
The Legend of CEPUCH
Long ago in the land of the Seneca there lived a giant of a man – CEPUCH! And he loved to flick his cigar ashes all about the area. Well no matter what your size is, nobody likes to walk on flickered ashes. So they sent up their own smoke asking for the help of the craziest and most fiercest scout that ever liver – Tom Kemp! And he came and observed that at about 5:00 every day , CEPUCH went for a wade in the lake. For those that go on camp wide tours a barge is pointed out to them and the recorded thickness of the ashes at that point is 562 feet. This gives you some idea of the number of years he has been smoking the stoggie. After watching him for many days he set his plan in motion to construct a giant sling shot; then he waited. One day when CEPUCH went wading in the lake Kemp cast a rock out to him which put out his cigar and he turned to see who could be so rash as to do such a thing to him. Well what do you do when your cigar goes out; you light a match and you put your hands up to shield the flame from the wind. Tom knew this and at that moment he let the sling shot with it’s cargo go and it struck home. CEPUCH knew he did not have long for this earth. So he plucked the cigar from his lips and threw it to the shore and it landed at the base of what is now Mohican campsite. But TIME and POWER of Seneca lake has moved it to where it now lies. Just as you are making the final turn on the road to the lake font look to your left and there you will see the cigar log with it’s point going out to the lake. If you look closely at it you can still observe traces of cigar ashes still upon it. Then CEPUCH staggered up our north ravine and he dropped his ash can and it created the waterfall located just below the chaplain’s quarters. Well what do you do when you drop your ash can? You put your cigar box down so that you can pick it up. CEPUCH was no different and when he did he forgot to pick up the box up and as a result of years of decay the only remains are a couple of cigars that have petrified in the side of the bank. They’re there; just above the chaplain’s quarters along the road. He kept going until he had reached our chapel area. And it was at this point that he was at his silliest and realized that he was out of cigars and in the wild! After vespers to the right you will notice a trail; it’s not very long’ follow it about 50-100 feet and you will see an area in the earth that looks like it has been scooped out. Come back to camp in the early spring about the end of May and I will guarantee that Skip Cepuch will be there getting in practice for another summer camp season singing “I’ve got that Hovey Spirit” with the famous thumb moving wildly once again. Have a good week Scouts!
(originally presented August 7, 1991 at the Webelos Resident Camp by members of Ganeodiyo Lodge)