Like many of us, Rick Bartke is a few different people. If you're a wallflower at a party, he's the man making an extra effort to include you in the group. If you're a co-worker, he's the guy with an extraordinary work ethic who truly loves his job, who will never let you down. If you're his wife or four beautiful children, he's the father whose singular goal is to love and provide for you. Unlike many of us, Rick, at age 46, just had a Heart Transplant. You see, Rick has Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy (a disease in which the heart becomes enlarged and weak). Since his diagnosis over 20 years ago, Rick has endured countless hospitalizations, fought through debilitating fatigue, and suffered pain only imaginable to those with a similar condition. Still, he persevered, following an increasingly strict diet and medication regimen. Until recently, he was able to continue providing for his family while managing his illness. On April 29th, 2019, Rick received the blessing of a new heart. We are so very grateful that once he was put on the transplant list, he only had to wait 13 days for a heart. But, Rick, Janel, and the kids have a long road of recovery ahead. Rick is currently still sedated and on life support and on May 3rd he had a 2nd heart surgery to address complications he was experiencing. While the emotional toll is crushing, it is made considerably worse by the immense financial burden and the fact that his son, Jackson, has the same hereditary disease. The Bartkes have always lived by the guiding principle that no person, no family, is an island unto themselves. We all rely on others for support and, like many of us, The Bartkes needs a little help. Rick will be unable to work until he is fully recovered from this monumental surgery and Janel’s days and nights will be focused on caring for Rick, taking him to appointments and rehab and still being a supportive and loving parent to their 4 children. Please consider donating to support him and his family during this profoundly trying time. Any small amount to help counter the monetary challenge is truly appreciated, and the Bartkes would be eternally grateful. Thank you so much.