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Around Our Town...Casper's Cool Kids

Zacharie Engberg

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05/01/2006 - by Julie Mizell

Can a child make a difference in the world? Can someone who has not even reached their double digits do something truly significant in the lives of others?

Our Town Casper thinks so and we'd like to use Zacharie Engberg as an example. At only nine-years-old, Zacharie has helped more people than he may ever know.

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Just last year, Zacharie raised approximately $1,400 for the Jason's Friends Foundation. "He just kept going door to door to door. Some people would only give him about two dollars but he kept saying, 'Let's go to another one,'" says mom, Shawna Engberg.

When Zacharie was three-years-old his brother, Austen, was diagnosed with a brain tumor. Austen is now six-years-old, cancer-free, healthy and "into everything". He will start school in the fall.

"Zacharie kept telling us the baby would be fine and would get better. He kept us going," Shawna shares.

During the Engberg's struggle, Zacharie says Jason's Friends paid for their hotel. "They helped us and they help others like us. They're a good fundraiser. I wanted to help them."

Zacharie is helpful to many other people as well.

He is an altar server at St. Patrick's Church where his family attends. When we asked why, his answer was simply that he enjoys serving.

This was evidenced one day when (like many days in Wyoming) the ground was piled high with snow. Zacharie noticed that the mailman's vehicle was stuck, so he headed out with the shovel. "He smiled at me. I thought he seemed nice, so I felt like helping him." Afterward, the mailman surprised Zacharie by offering him a small pay for the help.

Zacharie's three-year-old sister Marissa says, "I like to play with him. He likes to play with me. He reads to me."

Dad, Shawn, says, "He's a great kid and a great big brother."

"He's very helpful with his little siblings, very protective. Lot's of people comment that he's grown up for his age," adds Shawna. "I think that's a natural tendency of his," humor detectable in her voice, "When he was one, he felt big enough to go down the slide by himself."

Zacharie attends school at Crest Hill Elementary where his favorite subject is Science. In fact, he received first place at the Crest Hill Science fair and, after progressing to the District event, received second place there. "Science is exciting. I like doing the experiments and making the projects."

Zacharie aspires to be a professional baseball player. A goal for which he seems to be right on track. His Casper Youth Baseball team, the Pirates won the most games last season and were, in fact, undefeated. Zacharie is the pitcher. "It's my very favorite sport, and I collect baseball cards."

Thanks, Zacharie for being so helpful. We hope that will come back to you, too."

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