KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- The seeds of community service are being planted at one metro high school.
With Park Hill High School's football program (4-1) lies a community servant who's willing to get his hands dirty. No one has to order Trojans Nose Tackle Zack Mikuls to get busy. He's usually way ahead of the call to duty.
Part of Mikuls' summer was spent outside St. Patrick's Church off Davidson Road in the city's northland. Mikuls is a lifelong Boy Scout, who says he was approached by the church's scouting coordinators with a project he could use toward his Eagle certification. Mikuls served as an ad hoc foreman, supervising the construction of a sizable rose garden just outside the church's sanctuary.
"I've been going to St. Patrick's my whole life. They've helped me a lot in becoming who I am as a person," Mikuls told FOX 4 News.
Mikuls remembers hard work in the summertime heat, when he planted a dozen of those rose bushes, which are now producing delicate pink flowers. Mikuls and his team also installed metal flag mounts, pieces of metal pipes jammed deep into the ground where flags or banners can be displayed on special occasions.
"We worked on it for about six hours that day. We ran out of mulch halfway through, but we got more, and we got it done," Mikuls said on Thursday.
Mikuls, a senior at Park Hill High School, carries a perfect 4.0 grade average, which wasn't lost on the local Knights of Columbus chapter. That community service organization chipped in $300 toward the rose garden to help the gardening nose guard. Mikuls' football teammates say they see his unselfishness everyday, and the Eagle Scout project sounds like the people person they know.
"On the football field, you may not always see that with the aggressive nature that he plays. Off the field, he's a caring compassionate person who thinks of other people first," Trojans Coach Josh Hood said.
"He certainly has the brain for it, but where he finds the time, I don't know. A dedicated person like that will always find the time. That's just amazing," Grant Mertz, Park Hill tight end, beamed.
"Just seeing my project done and seeing before and after, it gave me a sense of purpose. It showed me what scouting is all about," Mikuls said.
Mikuls says he had a crew of five people helping build that rose garden. On Friday night, he and ten of his defensive teammates are due to meet a stubborn opponent from Lee's Summit West (4-1) in our FOX 4 Hy Vee Game of the Week.