In the not-so-distant past, Mohammed Al-Jumaili, of Fallujah, Iraq, was living in a state of fear as the Iraq War waged on around him and his family — a state that was only exacerbated when, in 2006, he lost the lower half of his right leg in a car bomb explosion.
Since coming to the United States, Al-Jumaili’s life has been looking up. But as the Abington High School senior walked down the center aisle of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Philadelphia’s Chestnut Hill on Saturday to receive his Eagle Scout award from Boy Scout Troop 117, the life he left behind wasn’t completely out of mind either.
Al-Jumaili, 17, is believed to be the first Iraqi immigrant to earn the prestigious honor bestowed by the Boy Scouts of America. But Al-Jumaili is used to accomplishing feats despite the odds.