PALM BEACH COUNTY, FL -- A Boy Scout and his father talk about overcoming adversity.
They just returned from summer camp where at least two kids in their troop contracted the swine flu.
"We reacted immediately,"said troop 150 scout Michael Gabriel Jr. "So I think, if we wouldn't have done that, then it could have been a lot worse."
Even though the trip was cut short, scouts from the Palm Beach Gardens area who got sick with swine flu say many positive things came out of last week's trip.
The boy scout motto is "Be Prepared."
In the case of troop 150, the boys and their leaders appeared ready to fight and recover from a serious health threat.
Scouts gathered at Camp Daniel Boone in North Carolina like they do every year.
But this year, troop 150 faced a bigger challenge: a potentially deadly virus.
"We were away from home," said Michael Gabriel Sr. "We were sleeping in tents. We were due to be away for a week, so it as a very eye-opening moment, when we did find out."
Michael Gabriel Senior and his son, Michael Junior, did not get sick on that trip.
But, nine members of their troop did.
Two tested positive for swine flu.
Seven treated as if they had it.
Health officials say all nine were immediately quarantined then sent home, just three days after their adventure began.
"It was really awkward because most everybody's tent mate was gone," said Gabriel Jr.. "Everybody was sleeping alone."
Scoutmaster Walter Colbath says about three dozen scouts who went to camp last Sunday are back home now.
He says those who got sick had fever symptoms which lasted 24 to 48 hours.
In the end, Colbath says the situation turned into a good lesson on survival.
"Part of scouting is teaching the boys to be prepared in cases of emergency," said troop 150 scoutmaster Walter Colbath. "In cases of situations where they need to react. In this case, they made sure that all their buddies were comfortable."
Michael Sr. agrees.
The former Boy Scout says the swine flu scare brought the boys closer together.
"A lot like any challenge might," he added. "A hurricane might bring together neighbors. This helped to tighten our group up even more so. All of our boys do care about each other very much."
If you include the scouts, the number of confirmed swine Flu cases in palm beach county has jumped to 20.
Copyright 2009 The E.W. Scripps Co. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
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