Coupeville Boy Scout ‘Caught in the Act’

Island County Children’s Commission member Rod Merrill presents Zach McCormick with the “Caught in the Act” award.  - photo courtesy of Renae Mulholland
Island County Children’s Commission member Rod Merrill presents Zach McCormick with the “Caught in the Act” award.
— image credit: photo courtesy of Renae Mulholland

Soon-to-be Eagle Scout Zach McCormick was caught helping people in the community, improving a park and volunteering at church.

He earned a “Caught in the Act” award presented by the Island County Children’s Commission during a recent Coupeville Town Council meeting.

The award is given to youth in an effort to recognize their positive impact to the community.

“It’s kind of neat,” a humble McCormick said about the award in an interview after the meeting.

McCormick is a sophomore at Coupeville High School where he is maintaining a 3.1 grade point average. He competes on the football, basketball and baseball teams.

It’s his efforts outside the classroom that local leaders have noticed. McCormick is a senior patrol leader in Boy Scout Troop 4058, which is the same troop his father and uncle participated in. He hopes to earn his Eagle Scout credentials in the next month. He is finishing his community service project by improving the concession stand at Rhododendron Park located south of town.

Coupeville High School English and language arts teacher Nichelle Gilcrease-Wolfe nominated McCormick for the award.

“He’s really grown to be a fine young man,” Gilcrease-Wolfe said during the Town Council meeting. She noted his work volunteering throughout the community as a handyman performing a variety of chores such as moving furniture and mowing lawns free of charge. In addition, he volunteers as an alter server at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Coupeville.

McCormick is the second student to receive the “Caught in the Act” honor. Langley Middle School seventh-grader Maverick Christenson, received the award Dec. 21 at the Langley City Hall. An Oak Harbor youth, Paul Derting, has been nominated to receive the award.

The Caught in the Act award stems from a similar program that is used in Snohomish County, said Island County Sheriff Mark Brown, who is also a member of the Children’s Commission.

He said the idea to offer the award comes from interviews from students.

“Youth were crying for acknowledgement when they did something well,” Brown said.

In the case of Derting, he was nominated because of his efforts mentoring children through Big Brothers Big Sisters.

The Children’s Commission was formed in 2007 by the Island County Board of Health. The committee is comprised of members who serve two-year terms. It focuses on early learning and advocacy for school-aged children.

To nominate a child for the “Caught in the Act” award, contact Dan Bond of Island County Health and Human Services. He can be reached at 678-7884 or

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