Age: 16
Age at T1D diagnosis: 4

Sam can relate to other kids with T1D who excel at school, love sports, and enjoy life—but who don’t always feel exactly “normal.” “I know deep down that I have something special about me with this disease, but there are so many other things that are special about me that don’t involve this horrible disease.”

Some of those other special things include playing goalie for his school soccer team, playing tennis, and running track, and even operating his own lawn-mowing business. Sam is an active volunteer, raising thousands of dollars for JDRF and contributing at his local homeless shelter. He has also collected shoes to be sent to impoverished areas throughout the world. Sam hopes to become a teacher and a professional soccer player.