In Loving Memory of

Zachary Tyler McDonald 4/28/97 - 12/2/11

Hi, my name is Zach & 4/28/2017 would have been my 20th birthday. I was born 4/28/97. I loved the outdoors, fishing, hunting, music, video games, my family and my friends. Sadly on 12/2/11, at just 14 years old, my life as we know it ended. Just like that, I was gone. Many people don't like to talk about why or how, but it has a name. Calling it by its name and talking about it may be our only weapon against preventing it. It's name? Suicide.

Today and everyday, I celebrate the gift of every precious moment I had with my son. I have to. Finding gratitude in the memories of our shared time is one of the few things that helps me heal. His whole family misses him terribly. Life is a gift. Zach was a very giving and caring soul, often donating his last hard earned dollar or sharing kindness with others.

One of the other things that helps me heal is doing something about it. Every day the tragedy of suicide claims more and more of our children, veterans, parents, grandparents, friends and loved ones. Our family decided that part of surviving tragic loss means doing something to create a positive change. We can't do that alone.

Whether you are a survivor of suicide, have suffered the loss of a loved one to suicide or someone who just loves children, we need you.

Please click here for more information and to join us in making a difference for our children today.

Our family hopes that by sharing Zach's personal story, our journey and by reaching out with prevention information and initiatives, then Zach's story may be able to help others. We hope to be a part of what sparks dialog and efforts to collectively fight against this monster we call suicide.

A poem by Lexi McDonald (written at age 12), Zach's little sister, created April 2012:
Zach liked to go to the Jellybean Factory, and loved to eat sweet
Apples! He made a
Catapult with his friends.
How I miss him!

Zach's Birthday Balloons 4/28/2012... Each one carrying a message of hope for prevention in his memory and a special poem from his little sister Alexis. We hope that these deliver a positive message of hope and prevention that we can all share in no matter where we happen to be.

For anyone celebrating and remembering Zach's life with us on his special days to come, please consider performing a secret random act of kindness while thinking of him. It could be a simple as helping someone with a door or making extra time to listen to someone who seems to need that. Anything that will bring a little extra joy into someone's life as he did for so many.

Golden Gate Bridge Patroller

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline

1-800-273-TALK
A free, 24-hour hotline available to anyone in suicidal crisis or emotional distress. Your call will be routed to the nearest crisis center to you. No matter what problems you are dealing with, we want to help you find a reason to keep living.

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The Trevor Project

866 4-U-TREVOR
The Trevor Project is determined to end suicide among LGBTQ youth by providing life-saving and life-affirming resources including a nationwide, 24/7 crisis intervention lifeline, digital community and advocacy/educational programs that create a safe, supportive and positive environment for everyone.

View details »