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Autism doesn’t keep Zachary down

Wayne welcomes Sonshine Shaved Ice


Sonshine Shaved Ice is owned and operated by the Jacobs Family out of Wayne.

Penny Jacobs and her son, Zachary, run the truck at many activities and events in and around Wayne.

Zachary is a loving and hardworking 24 year old navigating through life with Autism.

Autism or Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), refers to a broad range of conditions characterized by challenges with social skills and speech disorders.

Because Autism is a spectrum disorder each individual has unique strengths and challenges. While some thrive independently, others have severe limitations.

Zachary finds himself somewhere in between.

Zachary was diagnosed with autism at the age of 18 months.

“Zachary is not his diagnosis,” his mom reports.

From the beginning, his parents took a natural approach to his care, Penny says.

“The diet changes we made are what helped Zachary the most,” she said.

His mother wants others to know that there are natural treatments available for ASD and she encourages others to look into homeopathic treatments as a possible option.

“We found natural approaches that worked for him.” Penny added.

Because of the use of Homeopathic treatment, Zachary was never treated with narcotics, something Penny is happy about.

Zachary received a full education through a combined effort between home school, public school, and private school.

Once he completed school, Zachary and his mom needed to find something they could do together.

Through the help of a friend and with the support of many, Sonshine Shaved Ice became a job for both.

“Zachary helps set up when we get to an event,” Penny said. “He can do just about everything in the trailer but he is the Ice Guy.”

This is the most important job in the shaved ice business.

Despite being unable to drive and likely spending most of his adult life with his parents, Zachary leads a full life. When he isn’t on the road serving delicious shaved ice, he can be found volunteering at the library, playing bingo at the senior center, or putting together complicated puzzles. Zachary does enjoy some independence on the family’s acreage in Wayne where he loves looking after many animals.

Zachary has big plans for the future, too. He is working on training his dog, Rose to be a Therapy Dog.

Penny explained that it would have been encouraging for her early in Zachary’s life to see adults with Autism leading full lives. She hopes that Zachary, Rose, and Sonshine Shaved Ice serve as an inspiration to others.

When asked what is one thing that makes him happy Zachary replied, “That I know God is there for me.”

The Jacobs are grateful for the strong support of their family and Southgate Baptist Church. Call Sonshine Shaved Ice at 405-630-5819 to schedule them for your next event.


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