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Take a stand, make a difference

Tantasqua senior organizing diabetes walk

Tantasqua Regional High School senior Sam Rousseau is organizing a walk to help fund research for a cure to juvenile diabetes. The walk will take place on Saturday, April 30. (click for larger version)
March 29, 2011
STURBRIDGE — It is difficult to organize an event and promote it to members of the community, especially when you are charged with doing most of the work alone.

Sam Rousseau, a senior at Tantasqua Regional High School, has spent hours preparing an event that is very important to him, and he hopes residents will join him at Sam's Walk on Saturday, April 30 at the TRHS stadium.

The walk will raise money for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, which strives to find a cure for juvenile diabetes. Rousseau was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes four years ago when he was 14, beginning a turbulent stretch during which he faced much adversity. Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease that occurs when the body's immune system attacks the cells in the pancreas that produce insulin. Sufferers are no longer capable of making insulin, thereby necessitating the use of shots or an insulin pump.

"It was difficult at first to adjust to counting carbs, testing my blood sugar all the time, and giving myself shots," Rousseau said. Now I am on an insulin pump, which is more convenient, but I still have to be careful. The most challenging thing is trying to keep the correct levels during sporting events."

For more on this story, please see tomorrow's Southbridge Evening News.

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