Zac Clark Reunites with Woman Who Helped Him Beat Addiction: 'Thank You for Saving My Life'
Touched by an angel.
Zac Clark bravely opened up about his battle with addiction earlier this season on “The Bachelorette” — and, as he revealed in an Instagram post on Tuesday, he recently reunited with the woman who helped set him on his path to recovery nine years ago.
“On August 28, 2011, I walked into the @pncbank bank in Camden, New Jersey and I met my Angel, Rhonda Jackson,” he began, sharing a photo of himself posing with the bank teller. “Rhonda didn’t know me, didn’t care what I looked like and didn’t judge me.”
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Zac — who, on last night’s episode of “The Bachelorette,” won a spot among Tayshia Adams’ final three men alongside Brendan Morais and Ivan Hall — then explained that he had visited the bank during the depths of his bout with substance abuse.
“She just knew that I needed help as I tried to cash a forged check so I could get some quick money and keep getting high,” he continued. “Rather than call the cops, Rhonda called my dad (whose name was on the check as the account owner). 3 days prior, I had stolen a handful of checks from my father’s desk and left without a word to anyone.”
The handsome New Jersey native said that his family had been searching for him for days before Rhonda phoned his dad. “Rhonda’s call not only told my father that I was still alive but where I could be found,” he recalled. “He rushed down to the bank just in time before I disappeared back to the streets.”
The incident set the stage for a successful months-long stint at a rehabilitation center. “Two days later I was in treatment getting help and the rest is history,” Zac wrote, later calling Rhonda his “Angel.”
“It was one of the most powerful experiences I have ever had. She still works at the same bank! I met my hero, I met the woman who saved my life,” he said of his reunion with Rhonda. “She remembered the day vividly and we hugged like we had known each other forever.”
Zac concluded his post by sharing what he learned from his transformative encounter with Rhonda.
“In a world that is filled seemingly with so much apathy, Rhonda Jackson taught me a valuable life lesson. Always treat people with love, always believe and always do the right thing,” he wrote. “You never know whose life you might be saving. Thank you, Rhonda for saving my life. There are no coincidences....”
In a 2014 interview with the Reading Eagle, Zac detailed his struggles with drugs and alcohol. He said that he began drinking as an adolescent before taking prescription medications like Adderall in college. He later became addicted to morphine and other powerful opioids following surgery for a brain tumor removal.
Zac is now sober and works as an addiction specialist. In 2017, he co-founded Release Recovery, a 17-bed transitional living facility in Westchester County, New York, that helps addicts find their best routes to recovery.
See how Zac’s journey with Tayshia concludes when the Season 16 finale of “The Bachelorette” airs next week in two parts on ABC Monday and Tuesday at 8 p.m.