It's World Diabetes Day

John Crowley
By John Crowley Latest Reply 2008-11-14 20:13:39 -0600
Started 2008-11-14 07:06:29 -0600

As we take time today to observe the worldwide campaign for diabetes awareness, we find a reminder of how important this effort is from the quiet Wisconsin town of Weston. Earlier this week in Weston, a judge listened to arguments involving the homicide charges filed against parents who tragically lost their 11-year-old daughter because they failed to recognize the warning signs of diabetes.

If it can happen in Wisconsin, you can imagine how urgently needed this campaign is around the world.

Each of us has a responsibility to help teach people about this disease we live with every day. We need to speak up when we have the chance. Let’s commit to raising awareness about diabetes in our own circles of influence. Who knows how much good we could accomplish together. We may save a life. We may save many lives.

I was reading up about World Diabetes Day and learned that November 14 was chosen because it is the birthday of Sir Frederick G. Banting. Dr. Banting didn’t start out in life planning to be a doctor. In fact, when he entered the University of Toronto, he planned to be a preacher.

But fortunately for diabetics around the world, he changed his mind and began studying medicine. In 1921 at the age of 30, Dr. Banting began serious research into the hormone called insulin. With the help of his research assistant, Charles Best, he was able to isolate insulin and demonstrate how it could be used to reduce blood sugars in diabetic patients. His progress was so rapid that within a matter of months insulin was put into mass production.

In 1923, he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Medicine. He nearly declined the prize because his research assistant, Charles Best, was not included. Instead, he accepted the award and shared his portion of the prize with Best. Then in 1941 at 49 years old, Dr. Banting was killed in a tragic airplane accident.

I was thinking about Dr. Banting’s decision to pursue medicine. I’m sure he had no idea the number of lives he would influence for good when he made that decision. Similarly, we don’t know the kind of good we might do when we choose to get involved in diabetes awareness. But if we all do our part, there’s no telling what difference we might make.

And who knows, perhaps our efforts will influence the next “Dr. Banting,” the one who will discover the breakthrough that will cure diabetes forever.

It’s World Diabetes Day. Wear blue and speak up.

11 replies

GabbyPA 2008-11-14 19:33:24 -0600 Report

I shared some of my story with some people today and it just was kind of news, no tv, nothing that I saw around here on WDD. I will have to change that next year.

sparkysmom 2008-11-14 19:38:12 -0600 Report

Same here. I didn't notice anything. I would think the news people would have mentioned it. Next yaer I'll call the local stations a few days out.

GabbyPA 2008-11-14 19:46:00 -0600 Report

The website that John shared above has great pins, all kinds of posters ways to get the word out. I am not involved in any group here, but I can't abide the lack of awareness. It is up to someone like me to start something.

2008-11-14 19:19:35 -0600 Report

Hi all, I am in Wisconsin and the little girl that died had been sick for a long time but her parents chose to pray for her rather than take her to a doctor. This is a personal choice for people but when a life is taken because of it and it could have been prevented I feel very strongly that charges should be filed. Just my opinion. They had their other children taken away for a time and they were checked out and deemed healthy. I'm not sure if they have been returned to the home or not. My heart went out to that little girl when she died. A senseless death and an outrage.

Hopefully this type of thing doesn't happen too often in America.. we are supposed to be the big brother in the world but yet we let our children die of controllable diseases.. Frankly I'm appalled.

She steps down from her soapbox again!

I was out and about today and didn't see anything anywhere about WDD. I was at the doctor and hospital yesterday and today and even the diabetes educators didn't mention it. :(

vgarrison 2008-11-14 20:13:39 -0600 Report


Having the facts in a case like this does make a huge difference, thank you for posting more of it for us.

vgarrison 2008-11-14 18:02:31 -0600 Report


I had heard of WDD, but had never really looked into the meaning of it before…its sad that even on like secretaries day web sites like yahoo had a feature story, but nothing today about it being WDD…or none that I saw…

How horrible for that family in Weston. So my question would be, what if I hadn't gone into the ER when I did, and got DX with DKA and diabetes..and god forbid I had died, would they have listed my death as a suicide for not having figured it out?? That is just a horrible thing…

I will be going to the website that John posted as soon as I finish this post…you hear alot about fighting juvenille diabetes, but not so much about fighting all diabetes…but hey I'm all for either and all…when I got my tattoo someone asked what I would do if diabetes was cured…I said cry and be happier than ever…then get another tattoo over this one that says VOID…LOL

Thanks for bringing this to our attn John…

Blessed Be

John Crowley
John Crowley 2008-11-14 17:49:58 -0600 Report

Food for thought on this World Diabetes Day.

If current estimates are correct, there are 250 million people with diabetes in the world.

That means that if every person with diabetes joined hands and formed a human chain, they would wrap around the earth 7 times!

John Crowley
John Crowley 2008-11-14 09:25:43 -0600 Report

If you're interested in learning more about World Diabetes Day and the suggestions the organizers give, visit:

They have some cool ideas, including shining blue light on your house tonight. I think I'm going to try it.

GabbyPA 2008-11-14 11:51:20 -0600 Report

I went to this site and it is great. Now in my favorites. I think I will do the blue lite idea and I saw pictures of people releaseing blue baloons...ideas for next year.

What is sad, is if you look at the photos, and there are a lot of them, there is not one from the US. Canada has several and even Iran! But not one photo of US support for this. It was kind of sad.

For being such an advanced country, we are certainly behind in a lot of ways. There is also a map of the world and you can choose a continent and it will tell you how many events are going on today and how many monumnets there are for WDD. The only continent less than the US is Africa. Canada has way more things going on, and Europe is way ahead of the game. We have our work cut out for us!!

There are a lot of great ideas, materials, the logo and all kinds of ways we can get involved. I wish I had known about this site earlier, but now I can see what I can do for next year.

This is only the second year it has been designated a proclimation and a set aside day, so we all can be part of a growing movement. Yes we Can! (oopps...sorry Mr. Presdeint)

GabbyPA 2008-11-14 08:32:50 -0600 Report

I am looking like a smurf, and ready to roll. What an inspiring story, thanks for sharing it. On the other hand, what a horrific moment in Wisconsin, my heart breaks for all involved there. It has to be horrible.

This site has been a great source for us as individuals. I can't wait until we start to make an impact as a whole. We are a strong group of dedicated people.

We DO make a difference. Not only today, but every day. We cannot be shy. We must not be ashamed. We know better than most what it is to deal with diabetes daily...we need to make sure people understand the truth of it. Let's squelch the myths that are so prevelent. Today is our start, today we make a difference.

If we each touch just one person today it will be huge. If we are fortunate enough to speak to a crowd, even better.

What did you do today to show your colors?