INDIANAPOLIS — The American Diabetes Association is hosting a virtual walk on Saturday to raise money for diabetes research and support, called “Step Out Walk to Stop Diabetes.”
According to the American Diabetes Association, around 586,000 adult Hoosiers have been diagnosed with diabetes. That is about 11.5% of the adult population. Additionally, there are around 146,000 Hoosiers who don’t know they have diabetes.
The fight to find a cure and support those who are impacted continues.
This weekend some people will walk, some will run, and some will ride their bikes as part of this virtual event.
“I’m riding in honor of my brother,” said Tom Barnes, a participant and one of the top fundraisers in this year’s event. He said his family knows the devastating impact diabetes can have.
“We lost my oldest brother this past October from diabetic complications. He had been suffering from type two for about ten years and then all of a sudden things just went downhill for him. We lost him in the course of about a week and a half,” Barnes explained.
His brother, Stuart, was 62.
“My brother was a big brother to not only me, but all these other people and we heard the stories after he passed about how he was basically like a servant to his friends, to his church,” Barnes added.
Ricardo Martinez is also participating in the event this weekend.
“My niece was born with diabetes type one and we started a group, supporting group called the Red Devils,” Martinez said.
That team has participated in American Diabetes Association events like this for years, but Martinez never thought he’d be diagnosed himself.
“I thought diabetes wasn't going to hit me. I thought that I was immune or something, but it did hit me,” he said.
He’s not alone. According to the American Diabetes Association, someone in the United States is diagnosed with diabetes every 21 seconds.
“Information is the greatest weapon that you can have. The great thing about the American Diabetes Association is that they find resources to inform people to find a cure for diabetes and that's great,” Martinez said.
Some say every dollar and every step in this effort counts.
“The fight never ends until we find that one dollar that hopefully might be the dollar that is the dollar that helps turn the corner and we start finding that cure for diabetes,” Barnes said.
For more information about the walk and to register, click here.