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Curing daughter’s diabetes motivates this mom

Juvenile Diabetes

Betty Cole will have a personal mission when she leads a BP Texas City team in the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation’s (JDRF) “Blast Off for the Cure” walk on Saturday, Sept. 26, at Reliant Park in Houston.

In addition to coordinating a team and spreading the word about diabetes, Cole said, “I hope to find a cure for my baby, Hannah. The walk is on the one-year anniversary of Hannah’s diagnosis with type 1 diabetes. She doesn’t yet understand the concept of having to live this way for the rest or her life. She tells me every day that she wishes she didn’t have diabetes.”

Hannah, age 8, is one of more than 24 million Americans suffering from diabetes. The annual JDRF walk raises funds to support research into finding a cure for the disease and its complications. With BP serving as an event Silver Sponsor, Texas City and Westlake have a goal to raise $250,000 and field a large team.

For a year, Hannah complained of stomachaches and had insatiable thirst. Cole attributed the ailments to the stresses of school and Hurricane Ike because she didn’t know the symptoms of juvenile diabetes. Finally, Cole knew something just wasn’t right and took her daughter to the doctor.

Cole said, “One prick of her finger and the doctor told us to take her straight to the hospital. Her pancreas had stopped producing insulin, causing a blood sugar level so high it was off the meter. It took five days in the hospital to regulate her blood sugar.”

On a good day, Hannah pricks her finger five times to check her blood sugar and Cole gives her three insulin injections. On a bad day, she needs eight finger pricks. Cole said, “For us, life with diabetes is all about shots, needle pricks and constantly checking my daughter’s health and well-being. We have to take insulin, syringes and other supplies everywhere we go. It takes a lot of pre-planning, but we manage around it.”

Cole added, “JDRF-funded research also might lead to development of a different meter or pricker that doesn’t hurt kids as much or a new insulin pump – things that make life more tolerable until there’s a cure.”

You can make a pledge by going to, finding Team BP and choosing a team captain’s name. Cole’s goal is to raise $1,000.

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