I have been associated with the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation for almost 20 years. I spent several years on the board of directors for the Southwest Oh/Cincinnati Chapter. I was also a Co-Chair on the committee that established a second site in Cincinnati for “The Walk for a Cure” which is now held each year in Newport Kentucky. I participated in the “Ride to Cure Diabetes” when the event was in its infancy. The Ride was started by the Cincinnati Chapter of JDRF in 1997 and I rode in 1999 and again in 2000. At the time the event was a very small group of about 40-50 people and we biked 105 miles through Death Valley, California. The Ride today is now a nationwide event with 6 locations and tens of thousands of riders have raised Millions for diabetes research. I’ve spent many years raising money to help this wonderful organization that has done so much to wipe out this horrible disease. It’s been a worthwhile and rewarding experience for me personally and for my family.
Diabetes has affected those closest to me and it’s been an unwelcome part of our lives for the past 25 years. My wife Pattiann and my daughter Hailie both suffer from Type 1 Diabetes or TD1 as it’s now known. My wife was diagnosed after we were married and in her mid-twenties. There was no family history of Diabetes as is often the case with TD1 and she had always been very healthy. We didn’t know what to expect or what we were in for but Pattiann accepted the daily regimen of multiple insulin shots and finger sticks to monitor and record her blood sugar levels. I’ve experienced the sickness and nausea that comes with high blood sugars, and the unpleasant insulin reactions and convulsions that can come with low blood sugar levels. I’ve been there with her through it all and I would have done anything to take it away if I could. Years later we were blessed with a set of Twins, our son Chance and our daughter Hailie. When our kids were 6 we noticed that Hailie was drinking constantly, she experienced some weight loss, and was frequently going to the bathroom. The same signs my wife experienced years before were now there in our beautiful daughter and she was diagnosed in 1996.
Today both my wife and daughter are healthy but only because they work hard every single day to manage their disease. Both are now off of daily shots and on the Insulin pump which helps a lot but it’s by no means a cure and they still have a lot of bad days where they struggle maintaining a good blood sugar level. We all worry about the long term affects the disease has taken on their bodies so far and our daughter who is now 24 thinks about her future and having her own children and if they could have it. The technology and the care for TD1 have changed tremendously over the past twenty years and so much of that is due to the fundraising efforts of the JDRF.
Recently some friends of ours, the Quandt family had their world turned upside down when their oldest daughter Madison was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes. Madison is a beautiful little girl and she is 8 years old and in the 2nd grade. Her parents, Melissa and David worry about Madison constantly and I know exactly what they’re going through and feeling and I also understand the struggles that lie ahead for Madison. Her parents have become very active with the JDRF and they want the same thing that our family wants, to remove this burden from their child and find the cure for diabetes. We want to support the Quandt Family and the JDRF and in doing so we help everyone that feels the effects of this disease.
I have committed to Madison’s father to head back to Death Valley California with him and will again bike ride 105 Miles through the desert to raise money for diabetes research. David and I will be joined by my son Chance who has seen firsthand the effects the disease has had on his twin sister. Like my wife and I, Chance has always been there watching out for her and making sure she was ok since they were 6 years old. Madison reminds me a lot of my daughter and she is a fighter just like Hailie. Her dad says she has a “Mighty” attitude and is on a mission to find a cure so we call our ride team “Madison’s Mighty Mission”.
All proceeds that we raise will benefit JDRF to fund research to find a cure for Diabetes and I have a personal goal to raise $5000.00. David, Chance and I have committed to put in the time and the effort to prepare for this ride and for me after 14 years this will be a real challenge. The Quandt and the Brofft families would greatly appreciate any support you can provide for this worthy cause and we thank you as we set out to help turn Type One into Type None.
John R Brofft
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