-birthdate: 24 March 1985
-homeclub: CSS Onesti
-started training in onesti at age 7
Photo at right: Silvia Stroescu visiting Andreea
during her January 2005 Otopeni clinic investigations &
treatment; amateur snapshot from Andreea's private collection.
- favourite gymnast:Nadia Comaneci
-the family now lives in Zarnesti
- her mother Adriana works as a lathe operator at the 6th
March factory, and got laid off in 2001. Her father, a chemical
products operator is unemployed
-On 15 december 1999.Andreea's live drastically changed.When
she was training vault she landed on her head and got paralyzed.Andreea
laid unconscious for two weeks in a hospital in Iasi.
Results: 1999 -Romanian Nationals 3rd. Team (LPS/CSM
was a member of the Nadia Comaneci gymnastics highschool in
Onesti. The school where all the national junior gymnasts
Chelaru was hoping to follow in the footsteps of Nadia Comaneci
and other famous gymnasts, who all started their career at
Onesti as, for instance, Ana Maria Bican, Ionela Loaies, Andreea
Taclit and Andreea Isarescu.
Being a national junior team member, Andreea was on the right
track until disaster struck on the 15th of December 1999.
That morning she had started the training session on floor
but soon moved on to vault. There, she ran up to the horse,
pushed off, but got lost in the air and fell on her back really
hard. When she tried to get up, she couldn't. As a result,
Andreea was unconscious for two weeks, in a hospital in Iasi.
After being operated on in Iasi, she and her mother Adriana
were sent to Bucharest to see another doctor and Andreea was
operated on again. Andreea could only move her arms, neck,
eyes and lips but on New Year's Eve in 2001, she found out
that she would have a chance to walk again, following a surgical
procedure that she had done in September 2002, in the city
of Bordeaux, France. This was all arranged via the French
gymnastics club Libourne, which Andreea visited during an
exchange program with the Onesti gym club. Andreea went to
Bordeaux in September 2002 and stayed there for 6 months.
She had the operation done at the 'La Tour de Gassie' hospital.
Unfortunately she could still not use her legs and only has
a chance of regaining use of her legs through an other operation
but the chance of succession is 70%.
In autumn 2004, Andreea got a
lifetime pension from ROC (Romanian Olympic Committee); she
will get Euros 100 (like $ 150) and all medical expenses paid
(which more than double the amount, she need a lot of medicines
and medical supplies). Until then, Andreea's mother has received
a small pension from the State (as somebody which escort full
time a disabled person).
In November 2005, her ROC pension was increased
by 50%; now she gets monthly Euros 150 (like $200). All her
expenses for pills and medical supplies (like Pampers and
so on) are reimbursed by same ROC.
In October 2004, Andreea family finally got the
help needed to instal a phone line (after 4 years of waiting).
In January 2005, Andreea got a two weeks session
and medical investigations at Otopeni
clinic (a VIP's
clinic nearby Bucharest, used by former presidents and
top West actors). It was the first time when Andreea (and
her mother, too-her medical situation was difficult after
years of carring Andreea in her arms) got a high quality treatment
(including full RMN investigations) in Romania (all paid by
With same occasion, she got the assistance
needed to file a memo to the Romanian Prime Minister, explaining
her situation. She got a personal answer soon and her case
was directed to the Medical Department of County Brasov. Fall
2005, the file needed some more documents and a doctor's official
opinion from a Targu Mures Clinic. According to the Romanian
laws, before asking for State funds for abroad treatments
/ operations, you need to be consulted / checked by local
famous doctors which can legally approve such things.
In October 2005, Andreea received first hand info
about a Chinese
Clinic and treatment, using "stem"cells; this
treatment was successfully used in the past to help other
people, including Romanians, to walk again. The cost of operation
is around 20,000 Euros (like $25,000). If the proper documentation
is filled and all agreements obtained, the State can finance
such a treatment.
(read the "Libertatea"article
on stem cells:"Leac minune pentru oamenii paralizati"
Andreea Chelaru filled all documentation needed
for the medical Commission and applied for financial aid in
spring 2006. Local Brasov county medical commission has approved
her examination by the region medical Commission (which has
authority over all Transylvania counties).
In September 2006 Andreea has faced the doctors from
Targu Mures Medical Commission; they discussed with her about
all her past treatments and examined her documents from abroad
Clinics. Late October (bureaucracy is very slow in Romania)
she got a (kind of) final answer: they do not approve the
financial aid, partly because is not on the official lists
of treatments (it may takes years to be listed as "official"),
partly because they are afraid that, by approving funds for
this case...they will be flooded by many other cases alike
(and do not have enough funds); they recommend that the highest
Commission (from the Bucharest health Dep.) have a look on
the case. Too late, she already have an appointment at Beijing
Clinic in December 10.
Andreea Chelaru asked by mail for financial aid
to: RGF, ANS, ROC. The ROC has called her and advised her
that a partial ($18.000) funding was made available from the
State Lottery, another $5.000 coming from other sources. The
new ROC employee, Ms.Andreea Raducan, is now in charge for
these cases/projects. Bravo, Andreea!
Same financial aid will be provided to Bogdan
Cretu, Andreea's colleague from Brasov, which has same medical
problems and who also have a treatment appointment in Beijing
in 2007, obtained by romanian-gymnastics.com, too.
Since we received some questions from
those who may want to help, here is the list of what we need
to do in near future for Andreea Chelaru:
-obtain for her a new (quality) computer (the older one is
-obtain a (sponsored) quality Internet connection;
wheelchair, instead of the manual one she have now;
transport wheelchair .
Besides all, just a simple
supporting card could be nice, too.
Chelaru fan mail and new bank account details
Chelaru has a brother
If you have up to date info on a gymnast or your own
Romanian Gymnastics News Archive.