Springville native and Olympic medal-winning equestrian star Darren Chiacchia remains hospitalized with a rare form of fungal meningitis, the same type of illness that has killed 14 people, and sickened more than 150.

Chiacchia's case is not strictly connected with the series of incidents in recent weeks; that outbreak has been blaimed on tainted steroids, used as part of a back pain treatment. A spokesperson for Chiacchia says the meningitis was contracted from contaminated soil at a farm where he had been training horses

[State officials note there have been no cases of fungal meningitis caused by tainted steroids in New York]..

WGRZ-TV told the story this way:

Chiacchia earned a gold medal in the 2003 Pan American Games, and bronze in the following year's Summer Olympics, held in Athens, Greece. His family and friends have gone to his Facebook page to send messages of prayers and good wishes.