Local Meningitis Victim Gets an Honor From Kellogg's

Roanoke, VA - It's been a long struggle for many of the victims of last year's deadly meningitis outbreak that has claimed 58 lives and sickening more than 750 more.

That includes three more deaths just announced by the CDC that happened in Virginia.

Cave Spring sophomore Zac Foutz has been fighting the terrible illness. Last year, the 16-year-old felt this all came about for a reason, and now he says he may have found what that purpose was.

For many young athletes, the dream of sitting behind a table signing autographs is not one so farfetched.

"I was definitely dreaming as a little kid that I was going to be on a box of Wheaties or something. I didn't expect it to be for this reason but I guess I'll have to take it," said Foutz.

Few young athletes, though, will actually achieve such a distinction and for Foutz, the path he took to get here isn't the way most athletes do it.

"It's definitely hard keeping a positive attitude and everything but there some people that whisper in your ear and tell you, "You've been doing this well so far... you can't give up now."

While Foutz is still struggling with the effects of fungal meningitis, he is on the road to recovery. His story inspired the local Children's Miracle Network representative to enter Foutz in a contest that spotlights six children in tough situations on a variety of Kellogg products - including Frosted Flakes.

Foutz won the contest, making him an official spokesperson for the network.

"Zac has a painful condition, and to see the smile on his face and his positive attitude it just reminds me every day that what we do is worthwhile," said Erin Hildreth with the Children's Miracle Network.

But the real winners will be the thousands of kids the Children's Miracle Network helps as Kellogg's will donate a dollar for every four boxes bought - up to $50,000.

"I think he recognizes the importance of being given this honor and I think he takes it seriously and he'll do a good job," said Ben Foutz, Zac's father.

This fundraiser for Children's Miracle Network is a yearly event that is sponsored by Food Lion and Kellogg's. You can support this cause by purchasing special boxes of not only Frosted Flakes, but other products like Eggo Waffles, Cheez-Its and Pringles. The project runs through June 25.