Ziegler family named Marshals
August 28, 2008 · Updated 9:21 AM
MARYSVILLE The Strawberry Festival has chosen an entire family to serve as Presidents Marshal for the 76th Annual Twilight Parade June 16.
The Zeigler family is no stranger to the parade, as last year teenager Alyssa was chosen Presidents Marshal as she battled a rare form of intestinal cancer.
She and her brother suffer from the same malady and are both in remission, taking a slew of drugs to keep the tumors at bay. But just as their health was taking a turn for the better the family house was left in tatters after a contractor abandoned a home remodeling project half way through the job. The family manse near the Marysville-Pilchuck High School campus was torn apart late last year when contractor Rene Taberas allegedly disappeared in the middle of a $105,000 job, taking at least $20,000 of the family money.
According to Michelle Zeigler the last time the family heard from Taberas was on December 5, when he said he would see them tomorrow. She had just written a check for $20,000 to pay for wood and cabinets. They had paid him about $70,000 in increments as work was completed and the remodel was at a crucial stage. Alyssa had just had nose surgery in October and needed a clean, dry and warm home. But Taberas had torn up the drywall of the houses exposed walls. He was supposed to be adding two new bedrooms and a family room, but all that is left is a framed floor of joists on a concrete footing. The Zeiglers have scaled back their plans, and now would just like to get some help finishing the job.
I dont see him coming back, Michelle said.
She and husband Michael met with an attorney, who said Taberas had so many outstanding claims against him they would never see their money again. Michael works with the contractors father at Boeing and his family said they have not heard from him for months. Taberass phone number now belongs to someone else.
It didnt look good when Taberas started working at nights to avoid the subcontractors who were visiting the site during the day, looking for money they said Taberas allegedly owed them. They have talked with a TV consumer reporter who was of little help, and several representatives of the Washington State Department of Labor and Industries. The also talked to the Snohomish County Sheriff.
Its just sickening, Michelle said.
They have tapped out their home equity in borrowing for the remodel just as Alyssa, 15, and Michael, 13, were overcoming Gardners Syndrome, a precursor to colon cancer. A year ago they would each have had as many as 30 polyps, now they are each down to one, mom said.
At this time they dont have cancer, Michelle said. They have been really good troopers for being kids.
The Zeiglers have a huge number of friends and family who can provide labor and expertise, they just need a little help to put them over the top with more construction materials such as lumber, drywall, doors, closet doors and some roof joists. An unforeseen complication was the need to upgrade the houses electrical system, adding to the costs. They have plenty of help waiting in the wings and are selling Michaels prized 1971 Mercury Cougar on eBay. The KOMO people helpers donated $2,000 to the cause, but they need more to wrap up the aborted remodel in the house where they have lived for 14 years. Michael has a good job at Boeing but recently broke his back and is recovering.
I feel bad because I dont want to take away from someone else, Michelle said.
As Presidents Marshal they will get to ride in the parade and wave, but the Grand Marshall will be former Marysville city councilman Ken Baxter.