Revving up to find a cure

As motorcycles roar into Scotsburn this month it will signal the sound of hope for those with Juvenile diabetes.

This year marks the second year for the annul Ride for the Cure, an event benefitting the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) by having bikers collect pledges; there will also be draws and prize giveaways.

When the local JDRF Fun Run ended, Leah Sutherland picked up the fundraising torch and began the Ride for a Cure.

Sutherland has a unique connection to juvenile diabetes as her oldest daughter, Erica, was diagnosed as a child and her other daughter, Tara, is now part of a study to help find a cure.

Sutherland said she could see the signs in Erica before they took her into the doctor and hoped that she just had the flu or a virus. After having her sugars tested, it was found that Erica’s levels were at 47 (very high) and she was at risk for going into a diabetic coma.

Following that diagnosis,  Erica’s younger sister Tara became part of an organization and took part in events for siblings of children with diabetes. When Tara was tested it was found that she had four out of five antibodies, five out of five would mean that she had diabetes. From here, the Sick Children’s Hospital in Ontario heard about Tara and involved her in a study to help find a cure. Tara and her mother fly back and forth to the hospital to check in with the study on a tri-monthly basis.

“Her sister said to her, Tara, if you could find a cure why wouldn’t you?” said Sutherland.

The event and those who support it mean a lot to the Sutherland  family.

For those interested in taking part, registration for the event starts at 10 a.m. with kick stands up at 11 a.m.  Those who collect pledges for the ride will have the $10 registration fee waived. From Scotsburn, the ride will make its way down the Sunrise Trail to River John where they will stop briefly, then on to Tatamagouche for another stop and then back to Scotsburn through West Branch.

Sutherland emphasized that anyone interested is welcome to attend the barbecue and music celebration in Scotsburn afterward. There will be live music as well as raffles and prize draws.

“All are welcome, come enjoy the music,” she said.

Visit http://jdrf.ca/pictou-county-ride for additional information.


Tara, left, and Erica Sutherland   (Submitted photo)

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Heather Brimicombe
Heather Brimicombe is a Pictou County native and graduate from the University of King's College in Halifax with a Bachelor of Journalism Honours degree as well as a combined major in Sustainability. She has previously won a Canadian Communities Newspapers award for a multimedia feature and was part of a team nominated for a Canadian Association of Journalism data award in the investigative category. Photography, art, sports and outdoor activities are all hobbies of hers as well as crafting, and baking.