Olympic Coach Rebuilds Life, Rekindles Friendships

Firestorm Destroyed Borysewicz's 6-Acre Property

A celebrated Olympic coach -- one of the most decorated in his sport -- lost nearly everything in last month's firestorm, 10News reported.

Ramona resident Eddie Borysewicz, (pictured, right), is a world-renowned cycling expert. He was the U.S. national team cycling coach and trained more than 40 world-class athletes, including Greg Lemond and five-time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong.

One month ago, the Cedar Fire tore through Borysewicz's 6-acre property. Only his horses and a few prized possessions -- not including some championship medals -- were saved.

"This is the one from the boycott in 1980. That's from the Olympic Committee. I can't find (the ones) from Congress," Borysewicz said as he rummaged through his saved medals.

His crowning achievement from the Los Angeles Olympic Summer Games was lost. During those games, he won a total of nine medals: four gold, three silver and two bronze.

Borysewicz lost more than 40 medals, a lifetime worth of memories and his home for over 17 years, but in a strange twist of fate he was able to unexpectedly find something lost long ago.

"These letters and telephone calls (make me) understand how many friends I have. You can only recognize your real friends when you are in trouble," Borysewicz told 10News.

When word got out via the World Wide Web that "Coach Eddie" needed help, his former athletes rushed to his aid.

"It touched my heart, that's really nice," Borysewicz said.

His most famous student, Lance Armstrong, did not forget his old coach.

"Lance sent me a big check for $10,000, so that's a big surprise," Borysewicz told 10News.

But a bigger surprise was how his friends and students reached out to help him.

"(It is) nice how the American people have a heart to help," Borysewicz said.

So far, more than $50,000 has been raised for Eddie Borysewicz.

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