Polish discus thrower Piotr Malachowski, who won silver at the Rio Olympics, has auctioned off his medal to fund treatment for a three-year-old boy with cancer.
The 33-year-old world champion, Malachowski, wrote on his Facebook page that he was moved to sell his accolade after receiving a letter from the mother of a boy called Olek who said he had been battling a rare form of eye cancer for two years.
According to Malachowski, the boy needs to travel to New York to receive specialist treatment which is not available in Poland.
« I fought for gold in Rio. Today I’m calling on everyone to fight for something even more precious, » Malachowski wrote.
« If you help me, my silver medal may turn out to be more precious than gold for Olek, » he said, adding that he would use the entire sum raised to pay for the boy’s treatment.
A while later, Malachowski wrote « Success », saying the medal had found a taker.
Piotr Małachowski (Polish pronunciation; born 7 June 1983) is a Polish discus thrower, two-time silver medalist at the 2008 Summer Olympics and 2016 Summer Olympics. Małachowski’s throwing distances are seen as even more remarkable as he is not as tall as most discus throwers. Małachowski is one inch shorter than Beijing Olympic champion Gerd Kanter and three inches shorter than world champion Robert Harting and discus great Virgillius Alekna. The typical height of a discus thrower is between 1.95 and 2.00 m (6 ft 5 in and 6 ft 7 in). Despite his height disadvantage, Małachowski makes up for it with his incredible ring speed. Malachowski is seen as one of the quickest discus throwers in the ring of all time, closely followed by Róbert Fazekas.
Malachowski did not reveal the amount raised, but said the target – which was almost 500,000 zlotys (NZ$178,000) – had been met.