Connecticut woman needs help locating MacGyver-like Boy Scout hero

A Connecticut woman who locked her keys in her car was rescued by a helpful Boy Scout who combined resourcefulness and dexterity to save the day.

And now the woman wants your help giving the Scout the recognition he didn’t ask for but certainly deserves.

As reported last week in the Greenwich (Conn.) Time newspaper, Mary Jennings went to take a walk and immediately realized she had locked her keys inside the car. A worker at the nearby concession stand tried but failed to get her car open.

That’s when a Boy Scout walked by.

James, identified only by his first name, saw the stranger in need and offered to help. With his mom’s OK, James and Jennings went to her car. James, using skills you might see on the television shows MacGyver and Minute To Win It, slid a bent coat hanger through the crack in the window.

He positioned it just right and fished out the keys, which were sitting in the center console drink holder.

“Success! And all was well,” Jennings wrote in her letter to the paper. She continues:

James’ mother told me he is a Boy Scout. If anyone knows James’ family or who his Scout leader is, please pass along my appreciation. James exhibited all of the qualities of an outstanding Boy Scout. He was most helpful and resourceful in volunteering and helping me in my distress. For this I am extremely grateful!

Help recognize James

Is James in your troop or a neighboring troop? If so, leave a comment below.

Wherever you’re from, let’s give this resourceful, selfless Scout a hearty cheer.


    • Just for the record, the weather records for London that night say it was not foggy. The fog was added later by James West to improve the story.

      • Tom S, you may be right but for a good story to become a legendary story, it may need a little fog. For example the above story may one day be written as follows; “Mary Jennings went to take a walk and immediately realized she had locked her keys inside the car. Her puppy was also locked inside her car. Although it was a foggy night, another unknown scout came to the rescue” 🙂

  1. Publish this and all POSITIVE Scouting accounts, everywhere for everyone to see! The attention of our country’s population needs to be directed to these kinds of illustrations of what Scouting’s really about!

    • There’s something to be said about the humble example of this young man. Like the unknown Scout who helped in the fog, it makes my day to see stories like this!

    • This could fall under Auto Maintenance, and maybe E-Prep. There isn’t an Urban Survival yet, but Wilderness Survival may have had some influence here also.

  2. Absent-minded scoutmasters probably gave him plenty of practice!

    P.S. – This happened with my van while visiting family. Took a good bit of tool-rigging to reach from the rear vent to the front center console! Son #1 spent the next two days editing the video footage.

  3. It should be very easy to find this scout. All Mary should have to do is ask the council to search their membership database for scouts in that area named James, Jim, Jimmy, (pick one) and then pass those names on to the appropriate scoutmasters to run them down. I’ll bet they will have their James MacGyver within a week.

  4. This boy should remain anonymous. Scouts don’t do good deeds to garner recognition. It is wrong to try to seek him out.

  5. I agree – don’t ruin this by trying to give him recognition. It was his good turn for the day. Let him be anonymous,

  6. Good story, my question is how did he get a set of car keys through the crack in the window. That may be the real trick.

  7. While it is nice that the woman wants to give her thanks, scouts including myself don’t do it for thanks we do it because it is the right th8ngs to do and because helping people is its own reward

  8. Both of our son’s are active in scouting and are always willing to help another person without being recognized for it. The recognition may be very important to the woman who’s keys where rescued. She may have a reason or feel the need to thank James personally. Or there may be more to the story that we don’t know about. A little good news in the headlines never hurts.

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