WMU News

Diabetes fund-raising walk is Oct. 6

Sept. 20, 2001

KALAMAZOO -- A WMU staff member hopes to rally a host of Broncos for America's Walk for Diabetes Saturday, Oct. 6, in Portage, Mich.

Bruce Paananen, information technology, will be the University's team captain for the annual fund-raising walk, which begins at 9 a.m. at the Portage Celery Flats. More than 1,000 area residents are expected to walk the four-mile course, raising $100,000 for research to find a cure for diabetes.

"Diabetes is a devastating disease that has reached almost epidemic proportions," says Paananen, who is one of 16 million Americans who suffer from the disease. "It's crucial that we help fund the effort to cure diabetes, and, until a cure is found, educate people about how to prevent it and minimize the damage it causes. And the event inspires a lot of camaraderie and community spirit; it's really quite fun."

Paananen is aiming for a team of at least 10 people, but he dreams of assembling dozens of Bronco walkers-enough to win the award for the event's largest team. In either case, he's looking for faculty, staff and student participants. For more information or to join the team, contact Paananen at 616 387-5454 or <bruce.paananen@wmich.edu>.

A total of eight fund-raising walks for diabetes were or will be held in Michigan. Five were held in the metropolitan Detroit area Sept. 9. The other three are being held in Lansing, Sept. 29; Kalamazoo-Portage, Oct. 6; and Grand Rapids, Oct. 13. For more information about fund-raising walks throughout the United States, visit the American Diabetes Association on the Web at <www.diabetes.org/walk>.

Media contact: Thom Myers, 616 387-8400, thomas.myers@wmich.edu

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