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Pay It Forward: Help Jack Give Back

Jack Moser from Help Jack Give Back
Todd Kunz
Jack Moser and his mother Amber Peterson with Help Jack Give Back

POCATELLO, Idaho (KXPI) - This Pay It Forward started in a very tragic way. But out of it, came a simple idea from a young boy, with an ending that he has altered on his own. He is defying the odds, and it is very fitting for the holidays.

News anchor Todd Kunz wanted to Pay It Forward, because that is what the boy is doing.

"Really scary because I thought I was going to die. There was blood everywhere," said Jack Moser.

"We are camping in Island Park. Jack got ran over by a fifth wheel trailer that was being pulled," said his mother, amber Peterson.

"You'd think I could feel stuff, but I couldn't because it was just so much pressure. You couldn't feel a thing," said Moser.

"We we're really lucky that an ambulance was passing as we needed it. And they transported this here to EIRMC (Eastern Idaho Regional Medical Center in Idaho Falls) and then from EIRMC, we flew to Salt Lake City to Primary Children's Hospital, and then we spent the next almost 100 days there," said Peterson. Part of that time was spent in a coma. Jack was only fiver years old. His mother said she was told by the specialized doctors that she would be coming home without Jack. But Jack changed that. He's nine now.

"It was really tough, but we had a good outcome and a ton of like family and community support that made it 100 times better," said Peterson. She was later told that Jack would never walk again. Well, Jack change that too. He runs now like an everyday nine-year-old, as he shows Kunz how fast he can run down the lobby.

When he regained consciousness in the hospital, Jack had an idea.

"I just like 11 units of blood. Wow. These people are really kind to do this for me. So basically, I know what? I'm going to. I'm also going to help. So I just started doing blood drives, stuff like that. Toys drives, because I was, I was in there on my birthday, Christmas," said Moser.

The idea was to start his own effort called 'Help Jack Give Back.'

"You said, 'Mom, can you go to Target and get a bunch of Play-Doh for the kids in the hospital?' And so I said, 'Of course.' Nobody turns down a trip to Target. And so I went to Target, picked-up a bunch of Play-Doh and brought it back. And then it kind of snowballed from there into this bigger thing. And we just kept it going," said Peterson.

Bigger events eventually came, such as repeated blood drives and holiday toy drives, year after year, like the one now that Jack is helping the kids at Primary Children's Hospital.

"It makes me feel good that I know that they're doing well, that they're actually getting stuff," said Moser.

Time to Pay It Forward.

"And so it's been really cool because people are now coming to us and asking, 'When are you doing your next blood drive? I can I make sure I can donate?' It's really cool, huh?," said Peterson to Moser.

"Well, you've got another one coming up here for the holiday," said Kunz.

"Oh?" replied Peterson, a bit confused as a woman walked up to them.

"Amber?" asked the woman.

"Oh. Hi," said Peterson.

"Hi," replied the woman.

"How are you?" asked Peterson.

"Hi Jack. How are you?" said the woman, zeroing in on Jack. "I'm Cassey (Leatham.) I'm with Mountain America Credit Union, and we're here to Pay It Forward. We're here to donate $500 to Help Jack Give Back. You want it?" asked Cassey, showing Jack the cash from a blue envelope.

"Thank you so much," said Jack.

"You're welcome," said Cassey.

"Thank you so much," said Peterson, giving Cassey a hug.

"Thank you so much," said Moser.

"We just love what you do. Gosh, you just do a lot for all those kids and I know they really, really appreciate it. So that's awesome. I hope they will help," said Leatham.

"We're going to have to do another Target run. Go to Target, buy more stuff. We could do this for the toy drive?" said Moser to his mother.

"Yes, that is for the toy drive," said Peterson.

"Yes!" said Moser.

"I'll hold on to that," said Peterson, reaching for the cash.

"Yeah. We'll put it back in there. We'll keep it safe," said Leatham, putting the cash back in the envelope.

"Yeah. Perfect. Thank you so much," said Peterson.

"Of course," said Leatham.

"Can you give her a hug and say thank you?" said Peterson to Moser.

"Thank you," said Moser, giving Leatham a hug.

"You're welcome. Thank you for doing this. Yeah. I hope it helps," said Leatham.

"It does a lot," said Moser.

"It is going to help so much. That's a lot of Play-Doh," said Peterson to Moser.

"That's a lot of Pay-Doh," echoed Leatham.

"A lot of Play-Doh, toys. Oh, my gosh!" said Moser.

"Really cool. Huh?" said Peterson.

"Yeah," replied Moser.

You too, can Help Jack Give Back. He has a toy drive going on right now through December 20, 2023. The best way to reach them is through his Facebook page here.

"Pay It Forward" stories air the second Wednesday of every month. If you know of a nonprofit organization or someone who deserves to be recognized for their contributions to the area, click on "News" then "Pay It Forward" under the menu stack at the top left of our homepage. Fill out the submission form, or send an email to news anchor Todd Kunz at

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Todd Kunz

Todd is an anchor for Local News 8.


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