The 36-year-old addiction specialist was part of the original cast whom Clare Crawley met when she began her journey as the Bachelorette. However, after she got engaged to contestant Dale Moss and the couple left the show, Zac stuck around to meet her replacement.
He hit it off with Tayshia, 30, on their first one-on-one date during the December 1 episode. She gave him a rose after he shared his story about his battle with addiction and recovery, revealing that he was introduced to pain medication after surgery to remove a brain tumor.
“It was like this perfect storm of, like, here Zac is at 23 years old, this thing happens and, like, ‘What do I do next?’ That’s when I decided, like, ‘Oh, yeah, I’ll get married,’” he told Tayshia. “She did nothing wrong, it’s important to say. But at that point, I’m, like, drinking, doing drugs and just partying. Just totally being selfish.”
Zac admitted that his wife “left” him after he got arrested for DUI. “I was in a bad way, scary,” he recalled. “It was, like, touch and go. Moments of like, ‘I’m not sure if I’m gonna make it to tomorrow.’”
The New Jersey native said after stealing checks from his father, he had a “spiritual, crazy moment of clarity” that it was “time” to get sober. He went to rehab for four-and-a-half months and later ended up on the board of the facility.
Tayshia’s bond with Zac continued to grow throughout the season, and he told her during the December 8 episode while taking a lie-detector test that he was falling in love with her in front of everyone. “I hated to do that there,” he later explained to her. “I felt like that’s something I should’ve told you in a more intimate setting.”
As for the former phlebotomist, she reciprocated his feelings, replying: “When you said that, I wanted to reach over and grab you ‘cause I’m falling in love with you too.”
Scroll through the gallery below to learn more about Zac!