Gary Hall Jr. was born in 1974 from Cincinnati, Ohio. He is an Olympic swimmer that has competed and won several medals. Hall has competed in the last three Olympic swimming competitions. He has won a total of 10 medals for his efforts. His family is accomplished in the Olympics as well. Several members of the family have won medals throughout the years. Hall has various American honors including the Humanitarian Award in 2004.
While in the mist of competing, he was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. Even though, he needed some time to sort out this disease, Hall returned to compete again. His diabetes did not stop him from the 2000 Olympic Games and he broke an American record as well. Hall speaks out to young people faced with diabetes and allows them to know that their goals can be accomplished also.
Cynthia Ice is the designer and creator of Lotus software. She discovered the need for better software, a program that could better “read” the material on very dynamic websites. This program assists disabled people to search the web more efficiently and helps them purchase items that they need. Some people have a hard time leaving the home and finding products they need to survive. This is especially true for the blind and deaf.
Ice has lived with diabetes for over 20 years. She became blind from the disease. With growing problems and concerns trying to shop with her disability, she created a program to assist others with the internet.
Waylon Jennings was born in 1937 from Littlefield, Texas. He is an icon in the American country music industry. Jennings had a distinctive voice that everyone recognized. In his early career, he played bass for Buddy Holly. When the plane crashed that took several talented musicians Buddy Holly, The Big Bopper and Richie Valens, Jennings was booked on that plane ride. However, at the last minute, he gave his seat to The Big Bopper. Jennings may be remembered mostly for his work on the “Dukes of Hazard”. He was the voice of the announcer as well as sung the theme song. Jennings had several hit songs including “MacAuthur Park”, “Delia’s Gone” and “Just to Satisfy You”. Among his achievements, he has won various awards, including “Lifetime Achievement Award”, “Male Vocalist of the Year” and “Album of the Year”. Jennings was elected to the Country Music Hall of Fame in 2001 and inducted to Hollywood’s Rockwall in 2006. Waylon Jennings died in 2002 from diabetes complications. He was 65 years old.
Jennings had several health problems through his life, as well as a cocaine addiction. He became sober in 1984, but other issues became apparent. Jennings had a heart attack as well as diagnosed with diabetes. The diabetes began because of a starving hunger that was brought on because of his addiction. The music sensation had to have his foot amputated because of the rising problems with his diabetes. Waylon Jennings went to sleep one night and never awoke again.
George C. Scott was an incredible dramatic performer. He was born in 1927, a native from Wise, Virginia. His original goal in life was to become a writer. Scott was in the Marines and when he was discharge he went to college for a little while. However, he become intrigued with drama and shortly thereafter left to pursue his dreams. Scott began on Broadway, and then became a motion picture star. Some of his most remember works include “Patton”, “They Might be Giants” and “The Hindenburg”. During his career he received several awards including the Academy Award for Best Actor. Yet Scott called the awards ceremony a “parade.” In 1971, when they expected him to come for his Oscar, he did not come forward to get the award. Scott did not appear for the show. George C. Scott died in 1999 of an abdominal aneurysm. He was 72 years old.
Jerry Garcia is most famous for his works with the Grateful Dead. He was an American music icon. Born Jerome John Garcia in 1942 from San Francisco, California, he took the world by storm. His band was recording and performing their songs for over three decades. Garcia is remembered for his works that include “I’ll Take a Melody”, “The Wheel” and “Might as Well”. His large base of fans called themselves “Deadheads.” Jerry Garcia rocked right up until the end; he died in 1995 of a heart attack. He was only 53 years old.
Garcia has had several health problems throughout his life. His weight and the drugs he used caused various issues. In 1986, Garcia fell into a diabetic coma. He did not awake until 5 days later. The coma left Garcia having to relearn more of the basic tasks during the day, including playing the guitar. Garcia shared with his fans some of his efforts to control his diabetes. In 1991, he hired a personal trainer. Even with the proper methods of controlling his health, he succumbed to a heart attack while he was at a rehab center for his heroin addiction.
Marlon Brando is one of the most renowned actors of all times. He was born in 1924 and native to Omaha, Nebraska. Brando had a turmoil childhood where he was in and out of different school. He excelled in theater and enjoyed performing. The young man has had several menial jobs and only a little family support before he became a star. Brando is famous for his work in “A Street Car Named Desire”, “Guys and Dolls”, and of course the most famous of them all, “The Godfather”. He has won several awards including an Academy Award and an Oscar. Sadly, Brando died in 2004 from pulmonary fibrosis. He was 80 years old.
Towards the end of Brando’s life, he had several health problems. His obesity may have led up to some of his health concerns. Brando had respiratory failure as well as heart failure. It was known after his death than Brando was suffering from deteriorating eyesight due to diabetes. It was also rumored that Brando was diagnosed with senile dementia.
Billie Jean King, formally Billie Jean Moffitt, is an American icon. She was born in 1943, native of California. She has had a successful career. King has won several titles including singles, doubles and mixed doubles. She also won the U.S Open on all four different surfaces—grass, clay, carpet and hard. However, King may be best remembered as the lady that defeated Bobby Riggs in the “Battle of the Sexes”. Riggs was one of the leading male talents in the 30s and 40s in tennis. Not only is King admired for her tennis skills, she is also an advocate in women’s rights from sports as well as in society. King was also famous for being the first athlete to admit she has had a lesbian relationship. She is 64 years old.
King was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. She has founded several origination’s. The Donnelly Award is a scholarship designed for tennis players that have been diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. Overall, King has founded 9 origination’s. She is also a spokesman that offers support and advice for individuals dealing with diabetes and what they can accomplish with this disease.
Arthur Ashe was the first African American to become a member of the U.S Davis Cup team. Ashe entered the world in 1943, native from Richmond, Virginia. He has had a successful career in the tennis field. Ashe began his journey at a young age. He left for Saint Louis because of the segregation of tennis in Richmond. Ache was portrayed in Sports Illustrated. He also won the U.S. Open in 1968 and 1975. In 1985 he was elected to the Tennis Hall of Fame. His life was not always about tennis, he was arrested twice for protesting for civil rights. Ache died in 1993 from complications of AIDS. He was 50 years old.
Ashe gave the tennis world another look at the views of a diabetic. He was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes and still went on with his tennis career. The first major health issue came in the 70s when he experienced a heart attack. Ashe, the active tennis professional, had to receive quadruple bypass surgery. In the 80s, he obtained HIV during a blood transfusion that occurred during a surgery procedure.
Carol Channing was born in 1921, native from Seattle, Washington. Carol Channing was a diabetic who hid from the world her mixed heritage. Channing’s maternal grandfather had been a Nordic German, and her maternal grandmother had been an African American. Channing is a world renowned signer and actress. She began her career in New York City in a show off Broadway. Soon she moved up to Broadway shows which assisted in her acting and signing career. Some of her most famous pieces include “Hello Dolly”, “Thoroughly Modern Millie” and “Alice in Wonderland” in 1984. Channing has won 3 Tony Awards as well as a lifetime achievement award in 1995. She also has been nominated for the Golden Globe and Academy Awards.
Della Reese Patricia Early entered the world in 1931 from Detroit, Michigan. Reese is known for her jazz signing as well as her acting abilities. She began her career in entertainment by singing in Detroit. Later, after 20 performances on the Ed Sullivan Show, she began to get some TV roles. Her songs include “Time After Time”, “And That Reminds Me”, and “Don’t You Know”. Reese’s TV appearances included first African American women to guest host “The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson”, “The Royal Family”, as well as her most famous TV show “Touched by an Angle”. Reese is still going strong at 77 years old.
Reese has had a few near miss deaths in her lifetime. She accidentally walked through a glass window and nearly bled to death. Reese needed over one thousand stitches. A brain aneurysm almost took her life when she was filming an episode of “The Tonight Show”. While on set of one of the “Touched by an Angel” episodes she became ill. Reese then learned that she had type 2 diabetes. She was invited to the Larry King show and there is when the public found out about her struggle with diabetes. Reese is an active and vital spokeswoman for the American Diabetes Association.