Have a HEART for Frankie

For: Frank Rotellini
Organizer: Christina LaTorre
of $2,500 goal.
Raised by 39 donors
83% Complete
This fundraiser is closed. Thank you for your support!

The Story

Have a heart
Frankie is an ordinary thirty-eight year old man.  He likes motorcycles, hunting and hanging out with his friends and family.  Being a mechanic for the City of New Rochelle for the past twelve years , Frankie had a passion for working on cars.  He thought his whole life was figured out: he was married for seven months and was about to start a family.  Frankie’s life changed drastically two months ago when simple tasks became difficult to complete.  He was unable to get out of bed due to fatigue and an increased heart rate. Sleeping at night couldn’t be accomplished because he would cough and not lie down as a result of shortness of breath.  Frankie also noticed that he was gaining weight and had swollen feet and legs.  After being in denial, Frankie went to a local hospital.  This hospital felt that Frankie needed more extensive testing.  Later on he was transferred to Columbian Presbyterian Hospital.  It was here that Frankie was told that he would need a heart transplant.  Frankie has been diagnosed with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM).  This is a disease in which the heart muscle becomes thickened.  Frankie’s heart is slowly dying out and the only thing to help him to survive will be a donor heart.  
The news came as a shock to Frankie, his family, and to his new bride.  Frankie was told that a heart was needed for his survival.  From that moment life changed.  Frankie was told he would have to go on disability due to the fact that he would have to remain hospitalized.  Being an uncommon blood type the waiting list at this hospital was years.  Unfortunately, Frankie does not have years to wait.  Luckily, Michele came across a woman who was also awaiting a heart.  She gave Michele the name of another individual who was transplanted at another hospital which had a shorter wait time.   After much consideration and research, Frankie was transferred to Newark, Beth Israel Hospital where he now awaits a transplant in order to survive.  Frankie has to remain in the hospital until his new heart arrives.  Frankie knows that although this is a dramatic lifestyle change, a new heart will help him to survive.  On an interview with his transplant team he stated, “I love life.  I deserve another chance at it.  I hope I get a heart!”   Have a heart….Frankie’s Fundraiser is an event that will help Frankie and his family financially throughout the transport process.  On average, medication post transplant costs 5,000 a month and insurance only covers a percentage of that.  This fundraiser will also promote organ donor awareness and educate people on how to become an organ donor.  One person’s body can save up to eight lives.  Most people do not think about donating their organs until that are placed into a situation where their loved one’s life is at hand.  Please help us as we help Frankie and all of those who need an organ whether it is a heart, lung or kidney to survive.  Have a heart…help Frankie, and his family in this time of need.

Fundraiser Updates

Posted on June 20, 2013 by Christina LaTorre
Frankie chose a less invasive procedure, but it wasn't completed due to technical failures. Tomorrow he will undergo the same procedure, in hopes that it will be a complete success. Please continue to send your prayers.

Posted on June 16, 2013 by Christina LaTorre
Thank you for all of your support. It is greatly appreciated!

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