Hill-Murray Community Rallies in Support of Football Player in Medically-Induced Coma

October 30, 2018 10:23 PM

A show of support is scheduled Thursday for a Hill-Murray high school football player now in a medically-induced coma after suffering a head injury in a game last Saturday.

School officials said it's not clear when the injury happened or how, but Zach had some sort of head trauma. On the sidelines, No. 72 complained of a severe headache and then the seizures started. That's when Coach Pete Bercich "went out and stopped the game and talked to the other coaches and referees."


A release from the school said Mass will be celebrated in honor of Zachary Zarembinski in the Varsity gym at 9:15 a.m. And members of the community are being urged to wear green all day.

RELATED: Hill-Murray Football Player Placed in Medically Induced Coma After Collapse

A Caring Bridge page set up for Zarembinski said he suffered a brain bleed on his left side. He was taken by ambulance to a local hospital where he underwent an emergency craniotomy to allow his brain to swell.

The page said he is stable, but remains in the medically-induced coma. He has been able to wiggle his toes on command, give a thumbs up and squeeze a family member's hand. On Tuesday, Bercich stopped by Region's Hospital to offer words of encouragement. Zach's parents said his eyes popped open and that brought them tears and hope.

A post to the page Monday said he was suffering from pneumonia, which the page said is normal for patients in the ICU.

A statement included in the release from the school said the family is "grateful for the quick action of [Head] Coach [Pete] Bercich, Trainer Laura Henn, Dr. Hofkens, the referees and all the first responders from St. Paul Police, Fire and Rescue that responded to our call. We ask for your continued prayers for our strong, brave son Zach." 

"There are Angels on his shoulders, it was amazing to see them come in and do what they did. They saved this young man's life," Bercich said of the swift action and medical care.

A GoFundMe page has been sent up for those wishing to donate to help the Zarembinski family with expenses.

Prayers can also be offered for Zach and his family on the school's website.

As Bercich left Zach's hospital room Tuesday, he said, "Moments like this make you stop and think and to have the attitude to tell the people we love, that we love them and never pass up the opportunity to do that."

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Frank Rajkowski & Beth McDonough

Copyright 2018 - KSTP-TV, LLC A Hubbard Broadcasting Company


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