Family, Football and Type 1 Diabetes:
Grady has been watching his older brother’s Pop Warner Football practices and games for the past five years. He is his biggest fan, to the point where the team even considers Grady to be an honorary teammate. All the boys on the team think it’s great to have this little guy as their #1 fan and in turn they are some of Grady’s biggest supporters!
Up until April 1 of last year, Grady had no signs of any health issues, he was a perfectly healthy five-year-old. On Easter evening, he appeared lethargic and my gut instinct was to have him be seen. I made an appointment for the following day at 9 a.m., but still knew I could not wait overnight. I thought we were just going to have a quick emergency room trip to have his stomach pain looked at, but unfortunately we did not go home that night. We were taken by ambulance to Boston Children’s Hospital where we spent several days. Grady’s Family was there every day for him and the staff at Children’s kept him occupied while my husband and I went through our education of type 1 diabetes. The staff was so great that he often asks to go back to play.
Last month, the Billerica D Warriors took on rivals in their first playoff game. The team painted a blue ribbon on the 50 yard line and dedicated the game to Grady for National Diabetes Awareness Month. All the boys said, “We’re going to win for Grady!” The team, cheerleaders, and even the field were decked out in blue for support of Grady and JDRF. Everyone wore JDRF shirts and blue socks as they watched the Warriors defeat their opponent 12 – 7. It was an awesome game and Grady had a blast watching the boys play—the Warriors all claimed their win was because of Grady!
This has been life changing, however Grady is UNSTOPPABLE, and he continues his dedication to flag football, as well as the local wrestling team where he strives to win! His passion for this sport does not go unnoticed.
The Billerica D Warriors, with their lucky blue socks, and Grady who cheered on his older brother, secured a victory against undefeated team, Saugus, to win the Eastern Massachusetts Championship! “Once the blue socks went on the team was on fire and never lost a game”, says one of their coaches.
The team was featured in the Lowell Sun, read the full article: http://www.lowellsun.com/sports/ci_32270793/two-billerica-teams-get-eastern-mass-finals