Senior runner tells his inspiring story

20 Oct

Here’s a nice story from a meeting of Mended Hearts of Greater Rochester held recently at the Knights of Columbus in Webster.

Gates heart patient and senior runner Bruce Rychwalski, 69, was guest speaker at the meeting last Monday night.

Rychwalski is a fitness advocate and member of the Greater Rochester Track Club who has participated in more than 300 5K races since 2011, when he experienced a life-threatening Ventricular Tachycardia. At that time he was also diagnosed with Arrhythmogenic Right Ventricular Cardiomyopathy, a genetic, heritable, progressive heart condition in which the muscle of the right ventricle is replaced by fat and fibrosis, which causes abnormal heart rhythms.

After telling his story, Rychwalski impressed upon members of his audience the importance of keeping active and continuing to exercise after a medical diagnosis or procedure. His motto, he said, is “If you rest, you rust.”

Mended Hearts is a national and community-based non-profit organization that offers the gift of hope to heart disease patients, their families and caregivers through a variety of programs. Their mission is dedicated to “Inspiring hope and improving the quality of life for heart patients and their families through ongoing peer-to-peer support.” The local community chapters help people understand that there can be a rich, rewarding life after heart disease diagnosis. Members listen, share their experiences and volunteer to talk to other heart patients about what they may face including lifestyle changes, depression, recovery, and treatment.

For more information about Mended Hearts go to

Mended Hearts Photo #1

Bruce Rychwalski with Mended Hearts president Bernard Quinlan, VP Eugene Binder and program chair Marlene Adams

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