Brian & Laura's Run to Help Emily

WHAT AN AMAZING SUPRISE!! We just wanted to thank everyone for their generous donations to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation and for supporting Brian and Laura in their marathon training! They raised a total of $8,977.20!! Emily is very lucky to have such wonderful family and friends and friends of family :) Brian did so well in the marathon and barely broke a sweat! We can't believe how much time and effort he put into this fundraiser while he was also training. We are truly blessed to have so much support. Thank you all again!
Much love,
Emily, Pam and Dale

This is a quote from a girl named Julie in California:

"I am 13 years old and I can't imagine having diabetes for the rest of my life. I can't imagine going blind and never seeing my parents' faces or flowers or my animals. I can't imagine losing a leg and never being able to dance or walk normally again. And I can't imagine giving myself thousands of more shots."

My niece, and Laura's cousin, Emily is 5 years old and she was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes a couple days before Christmas in December 2001, when she was just 19 months old. It is a painful thought for those of us who know and love Emily that she may be feeling the same things as Julie. I'll always remember this one time when Emily was just 2 and she was getting an insulin shot - she looked up at her Mom in tears and said "Mommy, Mommy, why are you doing this to me, it hurts"! Emily has had diabetes over 4 years now and she is coping as well as can be expected. She has come a long way from when she was first diagnosed and could not comprehend what was happening to her, or why she needed to get painful shots multiple times a day. There are way too many 1 and 2 year olds out there who are going through the same thing Emily went through who can't comprehend why this is happening to them. We need to find a cure for this awful disease that affects so many babies and young children.

Last year, my cousin Laura and I were both able to qualify for the Boston Marathon, which will be held April 17th. The first Boston Marathon was run in 1897 and has since become the world's oldest annually contested marathon. We decided to use this opportunity to raise some money for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) and do our part to help find a cure for this terrible disease so that one day Emily, and children like her, can live free of this disease. We will run a combined 1,600 miles or so in training for this race, with an additonal 26.2 miles each on race day. We hope that the miles we run will inspire you to donate to the JDRF and help children like Emily.

We are attempting to raise money for the JDRF without Pam and Dale (Emily's parents) aware of our efforts. So, please don't tell them! Pam and Emily will be at the finish line of the Boston Marathon and we plan on giving them a statement with the total funds raised and a list with names of everyone who donated. It will be a great moment and we can't wait to see Pam's reaction!

This past September marked a huge milestone in Emily’s life: she began kindergarten! This was her first
time in school all day. Along with the anxiety any new kindergarten student and parent feels, we also needed to make sure Emily’s diabetes was being managed while she was away from home. Emily has been on the insulin pump for over a year now which allows for more flexibility with meals and snacks. Still, she has to test her sugar 2 to 3 times during the school day and get pumped an insulin bonus for lunch and snacks. This requires her to visit the school nurse several times throughout the day. Emily has adapted well with the new routine, but no student likes to be singled out from the others. For these reasons, and many more, we are very anxious for a cure to be found during Emily’s lifetime.

Please help by sending a tax-deductible donation to JDRF for diabetes research. Emily has received tremendous support from family and friends over the years, which has kept us all hopeful that we will soon find a cure for diabetes! Please click on the "Donate" tab for information on how to make a donation.

Feel free to call with any questions or visit for information about the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.

More info on juvenile diabetes:

Every hour of every day, someone is diagnosed with juvenile (type 1) diabetes, the most severe form of a disease that annually accounts for almost $100 billion in health care costs in the U.S. alone. Usually striking before the age of 30, juvenile diabetes takes a harsh toll on people. Not only will they be insulin-dependent for life, but devastating life-limiting and life-shortening complications such as blindness, amputation, heart disease and stroke, and kidney failure are an ever-present threat. Insulin is not a cure for the disease—it is merely life support.

In the next five years, some $2.5 billion will be spent on type 1 research around the world, including projected JDRF funds of $500 million, industry investment, and a $750 million supplement for the U.S. National Institutes of Health, passed as a result of JDRF advocacy.

JDRF will play a unique role in setting the global direction of these research resources, to ensure that they are used as effectively as possible to bring about a world without juvenile diabetes and its complications.

Founded by parents of children with type 1 juvenile diabetes, JDRF has always focused on a single goal—accelerating research progress to cure diabetes and its complications. To that end, our research management process is unique—we're organized as a diabetes cure enterprise. We take informed risks, continuously monitor the global diabetes research landscape, and make research investments strategically, to ensure that resources are effectively directed to research with the greatest impact leading to a cure as soon as possible.

This unwavering dedication has led us to award more money for diabetes research than any other charitable organization—more than $900 million since our founding in 1970, including over $98 million in FY 2005 alone. More than 80 percent of JDRF’s expenditures directly support research and research-related education. In FY2005, JDRF funded 500 centers, grants, and fellowships in 19 countries. In addition, our advocacy has spurred government, especially the National Institutes of Health, to increase its investment in type 1 diabetes research to unprecedented levels.

Through our unique peer review and lay review program, JDRF funds the most innovative, cutting-edge research worldwide. Our funding and leadership are associated with most of the scientific breakthroughs in type 1 research, including islet cell transplantation and stem cell research. We pioneered in the creation of multidisciplinary programs that bring together researchers from many institutions and such disciplines as molecular biology and genetics, immunology, transplantation, vascular biology, and stem cells. In a typical year, we allocate more than 80 cents of every dollar of our expenditures directly to research and research-related education.

Embedded in JDRF's mission are its three cure goals:

Restoring normal blood sugar levels

Preventing and reversing complications

Preventing type 1 diabetes

Contained within these broad goals are specific research pathways to a cure—treatments with the potential for having the greatest impact on all people with type 1 diabetes. The pathways are defined by specific scientific milestones to ensure our progress toward a cure.

Here are a few myths and facts about juvenile diabetes:

Myth: With insulin, people with type 1 diabetes can live a "normal" life.
Fact: While children and adults with type 1 diabetes strive to live as full and active a life as possible, a "normal" life for them includes constant vigilance, a daily effort to achieve metabolic balance, frequent finger sticks each day to check blood sugars, and multiple daily insulin injections. Even with the greatest care, it is not always possible to achieve ideal blood sugar control. Low blood sugar levels (hypoglycemia) can lead to serious reactions, and, over time, high blood sugar levels can result in life-limiting and life-shortening complications.

Myth: With strict adherence to a specific diet and exercise plan, and multiple insulin injections each day based on careful monitoring of blood sugar levels, a person with type 1 diabetes can gain tight control over his or her blood sugar levels.
Fact: While the above strategy is certainly recommended as the most effective way to achieve and maintain tight control of blood sugar levels, which is key to preventing the complications of type 1 diabetes, it is not always successful. Good blood sugar control can be very difficult to achieve. Many factors, including stress, hormone changes, periods of growth, medications, illness/infection, and fatigue can easily cause blood sugars to swing out of control. Teenagers, in particular, may be susceptible to this problem, as their bodies go through the many changes that occur during adolescence. Also, some people with type 1 diabetes are termed "brittle," meaning that though they strive for tight control, and are in good compliance with their meal plan and insulin schedule, they still experience rapid fluctuations in their blood glucose.

Myth: With the new techniques for transplants, there is now a successful "cure" for type 1 diabetes.
Fact: Islet transplantation (implanting the insulin-producing cells to replace those that have been destroyed in people with type 1 diabetes) currently offers the best hope of cure for people with type 1 diabetes. Since the breakthrough of the Edmonton Protocol in 2000, more than 250 transplanted patients have been living free from the need for insulin injections. However, as successful as recent trials have been, there remain a number of serious obstacles before islet transplantation may be considered as a true cure for diabetes—and a treatment available for children.

Right now, people who have transplants must take powerful, potentially harmful drugs for the rest of their lives to prevent rejection of the transplanted cells. There is also a severe shortage of islets for human transplantation, and new sources must be found. The good news is that scientists are working to develop means to prevent rejections from occurring without the need for lifetime drug therapy, to develop less harmful drugs, and to find other sources of islet cells, thereby providing an unlimited supply.