GoFundMe page set up for Wellesley educator and coach wrestling with health problems

Lou Grignaffini and Mark Yanchewski were the last to leave the water during the first polar plunge on New Year’s Day 2015 at Morses Pond. Photo credit: Jill Grignaffini.
WHS wresting coaches Lou Grignaffini and Mark Yanchewski were the last to leave the water during the first polar plunge on New Year’s Day 2015 at Morses Pond. Photo credit: Jill Grignaffini.

Mark “Chew” Yanchewski, Wellesley High School Special Educator and wrestling coach, is beloved by all who know him. He has spent his career encouraging kids to keep trying, to never give up, to give 110%, that they will get out of life and sports what they put into it. Yep he’s that guy, the type of mentor and teacher that the lucky among us can count as one of the helpers in our lives.

Now Chew needs help to literally get back on his feet after almost six months of surgeries. Chew’s wife Eileen Yanchewski, on a GoFundMe page that seeks help making their home handicapped accessible, says that a myriad of health complications “have sent him to the Operating Room twelve times this year, and he has spent 60 of the last 85 days in a Boston hospital, and 15 days in a Rehabilitation hospital. Chew and his surgeons are in agreement that he is too young and too active to be crippled with a high leg amputation (hip disarticulation), and they are doing everything they can to save his left leg.”

Ever wish you could pay it forward to that person in your life who was a veritable game changer for you? Now’s your chance. Chew’s GoFund me page is up and running, and it needs donations.

The family has taken realistic measures to address their new and ever-changing normal, such as moving to a single-level house. The home, however, is in need of  handicapped accessibility renovations to the bedroom, the bathroom and the entry into the house. With Chew being out of work since June (both school and coaching), the family must of course pay the regular bills, plus his medical costs, all on one income. Chew and his wife can’t swing the essential home renovations, which are expected to run in the neighborhood of $45k.

If the GoFund me page is successful, it will mean so much more for Chew than streamlined activities of daily living or the ability to navigate his own home with the ease that the rest of us take for granted.

It will be nothing less than a community coming together to take care of one who has given so much to that very community. It’s a way for us to spot people who are doing some serious, daily, heavy lifting. A donation to Chew’s GoFundMe page will be a yes vote to a determined person and his support team.

And that’s a vote we can all rally around.