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Published October 29, 2011, 05:17 PM

Stepping Out To Stop Diabetes

The annual Step Out: Walk to Stop Diabetes continues to grow in Grand Forks. This year's walk is expected to raise $60,000 for the American Diabetes Association. For those with the disease, every dollar counts.

The annual Step Out: Walk to Stop Diabetes continues to grow in Grand Forks. This year's is expected to raise $60,000 for the American Diabetes Association. For those with the disease, every dollar counts.

Team Dia-Beat-Its has been active with the Step Out: Walk to Stop Diabetes in Grand Forks since its start three years ago. Team members know first-hand the daily struggles this disease can bring.

"I've noticed a huge change in the 21 years of dealing with it myself. As a child it was very difficult for our family to change the lifestyle. Giving your child a shot, I can't even imagine," Team Dia-Beat-Its member Melissa Clark said.

Melissa Clark has Type 1 Diabetes. Recently, her dad was diagnosed with Type 2.

"I always compare it to the way cancer can take someone's life. I mean, it slowly can kill you, and I don't know that people understand the issues that come alone with it," Clark said.

That's why this walk raises awareness in the community. The American Diabetes Association focuses on diabetes research, education and advocacy.

"So funds that we raise at events like 'Step Out' they go to find a cure. We're hoping to find a cure, so research for that. But also to improve their everyday lives until we have that cure," ND American Diabetes Association Director Stephanie Chimeziri said.

Saturay's walk is proof that diabetes affects thousands right here in North Dakota. And for those that have the disease, seeing so many people come out in support gives them hope."

"It's exciting. Even from last year to this year, and the increase that has happened, so hopefully next year we'll have a bigger team and raise more money," Clark said.

To help Grand Forks reach the goal of $60,000 go to diabetes.org/stepoutGrandForks

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