Hill-Murray School rallies behind injured football player with special mass

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For the assembled student body of Hill-Murray, prayers feel like potent medicine to help push senior Zach Zarembinski through a tough recovery at Regions Hospital.

Students gathered for a special mass in Zarembinski’s honor in the school’s Varsity Gym Thursday morning.

“And one of the gifts has been our own Hill-Murray community to support the Zarembinski family,” said Father Kevin Manthey, the Hill-Murray chaplain, during the service. “I’m so proud of us, but we need to do more. We’re not there yet.”

Zarembinski complained of a headache during Saturday’s playoff loss to St. Paul. He grew dizzy and collapsed.

“As of now, the doctors are unsure the direct cause of the brain bleed,” said Becca Zarembinski during the mass.

His sister, Becca, explained how doctors an hour later, operated to remove part of his skull to relieve swelling, but the exact reason for his brain bleed is still a mystery.

“Coaches looked at films and tried to figure out if there was a significant blow to the head, but they didn’t find one,” she said. “We may never know what caused his injury.”

The Hill-Murray community is doing all they can to support Zach and his family with prayers and fundraisers. His immediate medical fight is tough and it will be a long recovery.

“It’s going to be a long road and were here for him so, every little bit of progress is a blessing and we’re just going to take it day by day and be here for him,” said Hill-Murray football coach and former Viking Pete Bercich.

“It’s tough for the team for sure given we can’t see him yet,” said Alex Bloemendal, Hill-Murray football captain. “We want to see him, but we know what’s best for him right now is that just the doctors are with him.”

Other events to support the Zarembinski family include a bake sale at the school put on by the football parents and booster club. In addition to a GoFundMe campaign, there is also a benefit fund at Premiere Bank in Maplewood. Students can also purchase green #ZZStrong72 with proceeds going to the family.

For updates on Zach, follow his CaringBridge page