02/26/14 — Meadow Lane student raises over $1,000 for American Heart Association

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Meadow Lane student raises over $1,000 for American Heart Association

By Phyllis Moore
Published in News on February 26, 2014 2:05 PM

Zephyr Cazeault still has a heart for a worthy cause.

Two years ago, at age 6, she set out to raise money for Jump Rope for Heart, the annual fundraiser for the American Heart Association. Schools across the country participate in the effort, incorporating the activity and other ways to take care of the heart through exercise, while encouraging students to generate monetary support.

Now a third-grader at Meadow Lane Elementary School, she was born with a heart defect and underwent surgery when she was 18 months old. Another surgery is likely when she turns 16, her family says.

That hasn't slowed down her zeal for the cause, preparing not only to participate in her school's event, but also going out and soliciting funds in the community.

The first year she drummed up support, in 2012, she brought in more than $1,051, her grandfather, Jerry Cazeault, said.

"Last year, she wasn't feeling too well," he said. "She made about $500."

This year, though, she made up for it and collected $1,066.

The 8-year-old -- she turns 9 Friday -- has also been training in physical education class to ready for the schoolwide event. It was to have been held Feb. 12, but snow closed the school.

Zephyr said she enjoys collecting money that might help other boys and girls who have had heart problems.

She also had another reason to participate -- her late brother, Jeremy, who would now be 3 years old.

"I thought about my baby brother, and I really love him so," she said. "I'm doing it for my baby brother."

Raising money involved visiting businesses around town and making people aware of the cause and her effort, wherever she was allowed to go in and drum up business, she said.

"We were trying to get like $1,055," she said. "But we actually got more than that."