“If you have enough to share, you should do so because it brings joy and for some it can even save their life.”
Polish Olympian Piotr Małachowski spoke these words only moments after winning a silver medal at the Rio Olympic Games in 2016, and in doing so set off an international chain of events that would bring lifesaving medical help to a little boy in need.
Małachowski, a discus thrower and two-time Olympic silver medalist, in the press conference following his medal winning competition, announced that he would auction off his newly won Olympic silver medal, with the proceeds going to someone in need.
When Gosia Mertuszka saw this announcement on her television, she immediately wrote to the Polish Olympian on Facebook about her son, three year old Olek, who was suffering from retinoblastoma, a rare cancer of the eye, and required expensive surgery in the United States.
When she asked Piotr Małachowski if he could help, Piotr replied, “How much was needed?”
After Gosia provided the sum, he answered, “We’ll get it done.”
And so began a race against the clock to save Olek’s eyesight that would involve doctors in New York, Małachowski’s Olympic medal, and a philanthropist in Poland who purchased the medal for the amount needed to cover Olek’s medical costs.
This incredible story, which was beautifully documented by ESPN’s Sport Center Featured, shows that one small act of kindess can have a long ranging positive impact and serve as an inspiration for countless individuals.
“My happiness was doubled because I got the medal, and then I was able to help Olek” - Olympian Piotr Malachowski
“I too was once the recipient of someone’s help, and I wanted to repay that debt” confessed Ewa Durska, a Polish Paralympian and three time Paralympic champion in shot put, who also decided to auction her Rio medal away for the benefit of others. “I had planned for a long time, that if I win a medal [in Rio] I would give it away to help others, instead of having it sit around in my closet” explained Durska.
Ewa went on to win gold in Rio, and her generous action helped raise funds for nine year old Wictoria, who was diagnosed with lymphoblastic leukemia and required a bone marrow transplant.
Sixty-four boy and girl teams from all provinces play in the nationwide finals of the tournament “From the Backyard to the Stadium for the Tymbark Cup,” now in its 19th edition. This is the largest children’s football tournament in Europe. Past competitors include Arkadiusz Milik and Krzysztof Piątek, the stars of Italy’s Serie A and Poland’s national team.
Intel Extreme Masters 2019 has kicked off in Katowice. The best teams from around the world will compete until 3 March 2019 for a lion’s share of the $1 million USD prize pool and the IEM World Championship. It is the 7th edition of the event which takes place in the capital of Silesia.
Although defeat always hurts, losing despite dominating a match is disappointing and second place is never satisfying, the Polish six-a-side football team deserves great applause. The gold medal in the six-a-side world cup was literally a step away. An unforgettable week of amazing emotions at Praça do Comércio in Lisbon is behind us – a great week for Polish football, a great week for Polish fans. It all ended with an exciting thriller...