At just 16 years old, high school sophomore Zac Clark has had to wrestle with the death of his father, who passed away last summer.
Zac, who plays football at Clear Fork Colts High School in Bellville, Ohio, is described as naturally strong, or “built like a tank,” by his football coach, Dave Carroll.
The high schooler displayed his internal and external strength earlier this month when he saved his neighbor’s life by lifting a Volkswagen, which had fallen from a car jack, off of the man’s chest.
Zac told WJW-TV that he was doing yard work with his mother, Lora Clark, when he heard a loud noise and subsequent screaming coming from the direction of his neighbor’s driveway.
His neighbor, a 39-year-old man who asked not to be identified, was trapped underneath his vehicle.
Zac Clark, a high school student in Ohio, rushed to his neighbor’s aid when he realized the man’s Volkswagen had slipped off a jack stand and was crushing his chest.https://t.co/2pJ4DKJkeU
— New York Daily News (@NYDailyNews) September 26, 2019
Zac, in a flash, was by his neighbor’s side.
“Without even hesitation, he darted, like sprinted over to the house,” Lora said.
Zac found his neighbor pinned under the Volkswagen, the vehicle crushing the man’s chest and head as he struggled to get free.
“I guess the jack broke or slipped and the car fell on top of him from the waist up,” Zac said. “Only thing I could see was his legs and he was struggling.”
High school football player Zac Clark, 16, lifted a Volkswagen off his neighbor’s chest after the jack slipped, saving the man’s life. https://t.co/BzFKfgqNVE
— USA TODAY Sports (@usatodaysports) September 25, 2019
On his own, Zac lifted the 3,000-lb car off of his neighbor, giving Lora and the man’s wife time to pull the mangled body out from under the car.
Zac’s told WJW his mind raced with memories of his late father, spurring him on to do whatever possible to save this father’s life.
“I wanted to be able to save him to be with his family,” Zac said.
The man was rushed to the hospital and is now home recovering, WJW reported.
“He had a couple of cracked ribs and his face was messed up pretty bad, but the doctors told him if I wasn’t there then he’d be dead,” Zac said.
“I just thank God for putting me in the position and giving me the strength to do that.”
Zac’s football coach listened in awe when his young player told him what happened.
“It doesn’t surprise me that he did this, he has just a huge heart,” Carroll said.
“Here’s a young man who’s been through tragedy himself with his father passing away last summer and he didn’t hesitate at all and saved somebody’s life.”
Carroll is proud of his young athlete for displaying such strong character on and off the field.
“We have a young man here on our football team that exemplifies everything you talk about as a football coach,” Carroll told USA Today.
“You always want players with courage and strength and does the right thing and doesn’t hesitate when you are called to duty. He did all those things.”
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