JDRF (Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation) Bay Area has selected nine children from around the Bay Area, ages 8 to 15, to serve as ambassadors for their 2012 Walk to Cure Diabetes. These extraordinary young people will assist JDRF in clearing up myths and educating the community about what it is like living with Type 1 diabetes.Owen Veit is one of those ambassadors. He is a fourth grader at St. Vincent de Paul School in Cow Hollow and spends his free-time playing soccer, skiing, surfing, playing piano, and singing in the Golden Gate Boys Choir. Owen was 8 years old when he was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes. Owen wants people to know that Type 1 diabetes is “not the end of the world … but it does definitely change things, a lot.”
Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease that strikes children and adults suddenly, and can be fatal. Until a cure is found, people with the disease have to test their blood sugar and give themselves insulin injections multiple times (or use a pump) every day of their lives. Even with that intensive care, insulin is not a cure for diabetes, nor does it prevent its potential complications that may include kidney failure, blindness, heart disease, stroke, and amputation.
Owen feels lucky to have the options available to diabetics today, but dreams of a cure, or at least better management tools, so he can feel like the kid he was before being diagnosed with diabetes.
ABOUT THE WALK
More than 6,000 walkers representing local corporations, families, schools, and other organizations are expected to participate in the 2012 Walk to Cure Diabetes in four locations around the Bay Area this October. The San Francisco Walk will take place on Sunday, Oct. 28 at the Great Meadow at Upper Fort Mason. You can join Owen’s Walk to Cure Diabetes team, start your own team, participate as an individual, or just make a donation by visiting www.jdrfbayarea.org/Walk/locations/san-francisco/.