CARL JUNCTION, Mo. — There’s a new winner for our monthly Golden Lion Award.

Travis Karraker is just a few weeks away from graduating high school.

Travis Karraker, CJHS Student, said, “I will be and I’m really happy about that.”

It means moving on from a jam packed high school schedule.

“I’m part of National Honor Society, ITS, FLBA, Center Stage, and am an Eagle Scout overall.”

Which includes an Eagle Scout project – helping with a local walking trail.

“Cleaning up the Ruby Jack Trail outside my house. I cleared off all the brush so they could come in and put in all the gravel. and I added in a little rest stop at one of the intersections and redid one of the signs.”

He’s helped put out flags at veterans gravesites to mark important holidays.

“That’s a lot of flags throughout the entire cemetery of Carl Junction.”

Observes Earth Day cleaning up the road near home.

“Then the highway intersection where the big welcome to Carl Junction sign is.”

Travis has volunteered repainting crosswalks near the CJ Elementary School and pitched in to clear brush at the historic Rader Farm

“Helped repair most of the fence line, cleared out as much brush as we could.”

But there are even more hours volunteering with libraries.

He’s painted the little free library, pitched in at the high school library, and even helped get the city library off the ground.

“When they first opened – sorted everything into the different piles, alphabetized it – moved it into the actual library.”

Travis has worked at food pantries and tutored younger students. Not a surprise for teacher Carry DeGruson.

Carry DeGruson, CJHS Teacher, said, “Travis is that student you can give a task to and he will not only complete the task all of the way, do it right. There’s integrity with his work and then he’ll come back and ask you for another task and that work ethic is the most amazing thing about him.”

Travis says his post graduation path leads to Missouri Southern.

“And planning on getting a degree in secondary ed for history,” said Karraker.