More Than $17,000 Raised For Diabetes Research 

More than 200 people turned out at the Jackson Laboratory in Bar Harbor this morning for the 6th annual walk to benefit type-1 diabetes research. Deb O’Donnell is a project manager & engineer at the Jackson Laboratory and one of the chief organizers of the walk. “The weather held out,” O’Donnell said. “It’s a bit nippy but it’s fall in Maine so you have to expect this.”For O’Donnell this isn’t just another event. He life has been touched by type-1 diabetes. “My daughter Rebecca is aged 18. She was diagnosed at age 9 and it was pretty devastating when we got the news that she had type 1 diabetes,” she says. O’Donnell is not alone. A lot of the walkers here have been personally affected by type 1 diabetes. Molly Dillon was diagnosed with the disease when she was just over a year old. Now at age 6 she needs insulin and a pump to help her survive. For the Dillon family the race means one thing. “It means hope,” says Heather Dillon, Molly’s mother. “It really means hope that a cure will be found in Molly’s lifetime. We hope that by the time she’s a teenager there will be a cure. That’s all that we have here is hope.”The walk here in Bar Harbor also serves as a support group for families who are struggling with this disease. “When you have to poke little fingers several times a day to check blood sugar, have good days and bad days, hospital visits,” says Heather Dillon. “Everybody thinks that diabetes is easy, but when you live with it, you know it’s not like just take insulin and you’re all better it’s a lot of work.”O’Donnell says the families that walk in the event can use each other as a support group. “To speak to each other and offer some suggestions you know on what works for other families.”So far Sunday morning’s walk has raised more than $17,000 for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. Organizers say there’s still more money coming in and they’re hopeful they can reach their goal of $20,000.