Wheelchair Donation

Fidelians Donate Wheelchair to Three-year-old Troy Jarrell


Three-year old Troy Jarrel, a child with multiple disabilities, will be the poster child for the Fidelians of North Haledon for 2016. Last Wednesday, the local group presented Jarrell’s parents, Tatiana and Jason, with a custom-made wheelchair for Troy and a $3000 check to help with his therapy costs.

Helping others has been a tradition for the Fidelians, which was started by a group of Paterson businessmen in 1939. The service organization relocated to North Haledon in 1976 and for nearly eight decades, has donated hundreds of thousands to hospitals, patients with terminal illnesses, for scholarships and has subsidized recreation camps for special needs and underprivileged children.

The Jarrell family’s needs. came to the attention of Nancy Cateneo, whose husband Dan, is a longtime Fidelian member. While browsing social media, she noticed Tatiana who was a former a classmate of her daughter. Afier reading about Troy, who is blind and has cerebral palsy spastic quadripeligia, she brought The ‘Fidelians’ attention to the Jarrell’s GoFundMe account set up to help with his medical and therapy expenses.

“Troy will be our poster child for 2016 and we’re dedicated to supporting him with our heart,” said Lenny Agrusti, president of the club.

Born August 17, 2012, Troy was delivered at 27 weeks and the premie was initially doing well. When he was two weeks old, the baby developed a blood infection and suffered a loss of oxygen to the brain.

“At one month old, they did an ultrasound and determined that he had brain damage,” said Mrs. Jarrell.

Troy cannot walk or‘ talk and is prone to seizures. In September he started preschool at The Children’s Therapy Center in Fair Lawn. The Wayne School District provides him with a nurse who accompanies the toddler throughout the school day.

The 30-year~old mother works in marketing for Toys R Us and Troy’s 40-year-old father is a conductor for New Jersey Transit. Both work full-time and rely on a specially-trained babysitter and family members to assist with Troy’s care.

Accompanying Tatiana at the event was her sister Claudia M’onello, her husband, and two of their three children.

Cousins Sydney, eight and Joey, nine, said Troy is “really special.” They like to help feed him through a feeding tube and entertain him with “Tickle Me Elmo.”

“We’re very-close,” said Monello. The sisters recently lost a brother, Georgie, who was 42. The Jarre’lls also relocated to a new home after their original residence was targeted for a buyout of structures in flood—prone areas.

When Fidelian Gene Coppolla announced that the group would be assisting the Jarrell family, Jason Jarrell stated “Tatiana and Troy and I thank you. We wouldn’t change Troy for the world.”

“With the help of a foundation like this, life will be a little easier. You cannot know how much this gift means to us.” he said.

“We’re humbled and grateful to be here,” said Tatiana Jarrell. “I am grateful to have such a great support system with my family and now with The Fidelians.”

According to his mother, Troy is participating in therapeutic horseback riding and she’s exploring aqua therapy options. He also has a specialized physical therapy called Medek. Therapy is included as part of the school day for special needs, children but additional programs outside the school day have to be financed by the child’s family.

Coppolla told of the history of the Fidelians of America, who raised $250,000 in the early 1940s to purchase a B24 bomber during World War II.

The present-club has 110 members and started the Fidelians Foundation a few years ago.