Welcome to my JDRF Ride to Cure Diabetes Page!
Over the last couple of years I became close friends with a number of people here in Little Rock whose children have been diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. T1D (Type 1 diabetes) is commonly called juvenile diabetes, and it can strike anyone at any time, children or adults. It is an autoimmune disease that never gets better, and complications from this disease include kidney failure, blindness, nerve damage, heart attack, amputations and early death. Can you imagine being a parent of a young child or infant who has juvenile diabetes and giving them 1,460 insulin shots a year, drawing blood to check their blood sugar 2,190 times a year and counting carbohydrates before they eat 1,825 times a year? These statistics are real for 16 million families in the United States today, and we need a cure!
This past year Jack, the grandson of my dear friend was diagnosed with T1D the week before starting Kindergarten. Learning of Jack’s story hit me close to home with my son being of the same age, I can only imagine the emotions of a parent for their child being diagnosed with T1D.
The following is a short letter from Jacks mom.
“Jack is six years old. He loves to play baseball, play drums, and capture the flag. He loves playing with his Skylanders and reading books as well. He is a very typical six-year-old finishing Kindergarten. As we prepared for Kindergarten we had the same fears and excitement as other families. However, the week before Jack started Kindergarten he was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes. This was a very scary and overwhelming time for our family and brought on a whole new set of worries for school. He was showing symptoms for several weeks before we noticed there was anything wrong. As we look back the signs were there they are just hard to see in the beginning. We noticed that he had lost a large amount of weight, which is hard because he is so skinny to begin with! He also was drinking an abnormal amount of fluids and having to urinate way more than normal. I knew these were signs of diabetes and in the back of my mind I knew that was what was wrong. I was hopeful it would be something else, but it was not. We went to the doctor to have his sugar checked and it was 380. We now know that his range should be between 80 and 180. It was kind of a whirlwind from that point forward. We spent the next three days at Children’s Hospital getting an education on diabetes and all of the changes that were coming in our lives. Jack has done a wonderful job adjusting to the changes that have come his way. He is a very flexible and resilient little boy. He has to check his blood sugar at least 4 times a day and he requires 4 insulin shots every day. We also have to account for everything he eats. He will be insulin dependent for the rest of his life. He still enjoys doing all of the things that every other six-year-old little boy does and he does not let his diabetes hold him back. It is something we constantly have to think about and manage while still making sure he gets to enjoy all of the things he loves. We look forward to the day when we can find a cure for Type 1 Diabetes.”
On September 7th, I will be participating in the JDRF (Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation) Ride to Cure Diabetes which is a 72 mile bicycle ride around Lake Tahoe. Our ride begins at an elevation of over 6,000 feet, and on the course we climb several mountains, the toughest being an 8 mile climb beginning at mile 52 with an elevation gain of 1,044 feet. Our goal is to raise $5 million to fund research for better treatments and a cure for type 1 diabetes. Personally, I have committed to raise $10,000.
I am asking you to help support my fundraising efforts with a donation. Any amount, great or small, helps us get closer to our goal of finding better treatments and a cure for type 1 diabetes.
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Advanced Fluid Technologies
American Material Handling
Barry and Joyce Priest
Bella & Rocco
Beverly Nichols in Memory of David Morrison
Company Arkansas Office Products
Doyle & Sue Rankins
Glen and Ann Dampier
Mr. Matthew Rankins
Rankins Rail Service, Inc.