March 25, 1996

Maria Magdalena Andrejczyk Polish javelin thrower/ track and field athlete is born.

On August 11, 2021 she announced that she auctioned her Tokyo silver medal to help eight month-year-old get heart surgery.

Maria Magdalena Andrejczyk is a Polish track and field athlete who competes in the javelin throw. She is the 2020 Summer Olympics silver medalist and 2015 European Junior Champion. (Wikipedia)

Cancer Diagnosis: Besides the shoulder issues, she was suffering from persistent headaches and nasal issues which made sleep difficult. In October of that year a sinus X-ray discovered she has an osteosarcoma – a form of bone cancer. It was a shock to the Olympic fourth-place finisher, but she adopted a positive attitude from the outset.

“It was not something very dangerous and I knew I could make a quick recovery,” she insists. “It was a soft cancer and I didn’t have to go through chemotherapy.”

Andrejczyk underwent surgery and was back in training just three weeks later. No longer suffering headaches and sinus issues, she could focus more attention on the shoulder injury and through a combination of research and her own astute improvisations she put together a programme of exercises to strengthen and improve flexibility in the troublesome shoulder. Over time the plan worked and by April 2019 she was throwing pain-free once again. (World Athletics)

Tendon injury: Based out of her home village, Andrejczyk currently trains at her local gymnasium and helps build speed and shoulder strength by using an axe to strike logs of wood in repeated reps.

Unfortunately for Andrejczyk, her injury curse struck once again in January as she picked up a nagging achilles tendon injury. So when the decision was taken to postpone the Olympics until 2021, Andrejczyk was given a reprieve.

“When the information came that the Olympics was postponed, I was delighted,” she says with a smile.(World Athletics)

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Related Articles:

  • “Fueled by a warrior spirit, quitting is not an option for javelin star Andrejczyk” | World Athletics
  • “Polish Olympian auctions sliver medal to help sick child” | abcnews
  • “Olympian auctions Tokyo medal for infant’s saving heart surgery” | Weau13News

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Link to Photo Credit: Maria Andrejczyck

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