Zac was a senior in high school in 2012. He had plans to attend Linn State Technical College in the summer. He had completed his graduation requirements and was going to walk with his graduating class in May.
Zac loved the outdoors and would spend hours fixing something or putting something together. He loved to fish, hunt, and hang out with his friends. But most of all Zac liked to make people smile. He was quite the character, always going out of his way to do something silly to make someone happy. His caring nature has been evident since he was a small boy. When you would ask him about his day, you would most likely hear about everyone else's. He wanted everyone to be happy. It bothered him hugely if someone was upset or in pain.
Zac was involved in a bad car accident in the blinding snow on the afternoon of February 13, 2012. He was critically injured and transferred to Children's Hospital in St. Louis. The head injury he sustained was too severe and on February 14th, 2012 it was declared that brain death had occurred. Zachary became a silent hero to many in the days that followed.
On Feb. 14th, 2012 our lives changed forever with the death of our son. Zac is greatly missed every single day. We find much joy in knowing that Zac has helped so many people. This is the most comforting feeling anyone can experience in the face of death. Without organ donation, Zac’s story is a tragic loss. With organ donation, Zac’s story is a tragic loss that ends with a lot of love and healing for all involved.
-Amy and Troy Wildhaber
Zac’s Challenge was created to raise awareness for organ donation. Our family has committed to keep sharing information about organ donation and assisting others in making the decision that is right for them. We are hopeful that by sharing facts and stories like Zac’s, we can assist more people in registering to become organ donors.