Sioux Falls teen wins Girl Scout award by training dead dog


SIOUX FALLS, SD (KELO) — A Girl Scout from South Dakota has received the highest honor possible, the gold medal.

Isabele Johnson received the Gold Award for carrying out her project, which involved training a search and rescue dog. She trained her dog, Atlanta, to become a dead dog and help law enforcement when needed.

Johnson has spent the past four years working with her dog, Atlanta, to become a dead body search and rescue dog.

“It’s a very long process. It’s a lot of long nights,” Johnson said. “When she was a puppy, I got up at midnight every night to take her outside, and came home every lunchtime during school to take her out again. I started training with Big Paws Canine when she was younger to learn some of those basic obedience skills and continue training from there.

By completing this project, Johnson received the Girl Scouts Gold Award, the highest honor obtainable by the organization.

“It means the world to me. It’s something I’ve worked so hard for and worked so long for. It’s really gratifying for me to finally finish it and finally do it and it’s an incredible honor for me to get it,” Johnson said.

“It really goes back to our core mission at Girl Scouts, to create girls or build girls of courage, confidence and character, who make the world a better place and to do a community service project like this that creates lasting change makes really make the world a better place,” said Bailey, director of communications at Girl Scouts Dakota Horizons.

Only 6% of Girl Scouts receive the special award.

“It’s just a great feeling to see them accomplish this and then the joy on their faces and their families, so it’s really a great experience,” Brooker said.

Work hard to be a strong role model for young Girl Scouts.

“It means the world has younger girls watching me because I remember when I was younger I always watched the older Girl Scouts you know were PAing and CITing, I loved watching them,” said Johnson said.

They really can do anything that gives back to the community to earn their gold medal, from teaching young scouts life skills like cooking and sewing, to starting community gardens or even creating sensory rooms for a kindergarten, really anything that meets a need in their community.


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