25 Legends: Hillary Liber
This year marks the 25th anniversary of two American Diabetes Association® signature fundraising events—Step Out: Walk to Stop Diabetes® and Tour de Cure®.
Every dollar raised at these events supports people living with diabetes and funds our life-changing research and programs.
The “25 Legends” blog series highlights personal stories from some of the Association’s most dedicated walkers and riders who live with the disease.
I am turning 63 years old this month and I currently live in San Diego. I have been living with type 1 diabetes for 25 years.
When I was first diagnosed, I was terrified. My doctor recognized my fear, held my hands in his and asked me what scared me. I told him about my two uncles who had type 1 diabetes. The first was blind and had both of his legs amputated from his knees down. The other died in his 40s. I knew them when they were once just like me—healthy and full of life.
I wondered if their fate would be mine. My doctor promised me it would not, and he was right! All these years later, my only complication has been cataracts.
The American Diabetes Association helped me get through many things, including understanding the differences and similarities between type 1 and type 2 diabetes. They also taught me about insulin pumps and helped me switch from eight injections a day to two pump insertions a week.
The Association is helping everyone manage their diabetes on a daily basis. They support our loved ones with education, family activities and camp programs, and funding leading-edge research in diabetes prevention, treatment and probable cures. It’s my goal to help others the way the Association helped me.
I began walking in Step Out: Walk to Stop Diabetes in 1995 and was proud to raise $750! My team, Hillary’s Havurah, has been supporting me for the past 18 years. “Havurah” in Hebrew means fellowship and coming together for a purpose—in this case, to Stop Diabetes. Each year, I send out 700 letters and 400 emails, and together we raise an average of $15,000. In our best year, we topped $20,000!
Our fundraising goal is always $18,000 because 18 in Hebrew is “Chai,” which means life. We like to say, “We saved 1,000 lives.” Our Step Out team wants a world that is diabetes free, so we work every day to Stop Diabetes! Whether it’s through advocating in our communities and government, educating everyone we meet or raising funds, we support the Association’s great work.
Please join us at a Step Out event! We want you to push us out of the No. 1 fundraising spot in San Diego! It takes sincere effort and lots of dedication, but you can do it.
Unfortunately as many as 1 in 3 American adults will have diabetes by 2050 if present
trends continue. Everyone knows someone with diabetes, and everyone wants to fight it. So just ask them to contribute and provide them the opportunity to help!
Together, we CAN Stop Diabetes.
The Association is so grateful of our 25 Legends! Their tireless efforts as walkers and riders are a tremendous support and inspiration to people with diabetes.
Sign up today! Learn more about these events and find out how to get involved at diabetes.org/stepout and diabetes.org/tourdecure.