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Friday, June 18, 2010 - Kris Freeman, Olympic Cross-Country Skier & U.S. National Champion, Visits Diabetic Kids

Kris Freeman at Camp KoralKids
Kris Freeman makes his own diabetic ID bracelets with the campers.
 
Kris Freeman at Camp KoralKids
(L to R): Dr. Ernesto Blanco, Camp KoralKids Medical Director; Kris Freeman; and Kathy Byrne, RN &Camp CoralKids Director.
Coral Springs - Coral Springs Medical Center's Camp KoralKids, Broward County's only diabetic day camp kicked off its first day of camp with an appearance from Kris Freeman, three-time Olympic Cross-Country Skier & reigning U.S. National Champion.

He interacted with the  kids and spoke to them about his inspiring journey with diabetes.  As someone with type 1 diabetes, part of his crusade is to share his personal story with campers and inspire them to achieve their dreams while managing diabetes.

“The kids were so inspired by his story,” said Kathy Byrne RN, Camp KoralKids Camp Director. “Sometimes kids need a role model who can relate to them. He encouraged them to not let diabetes hinder their dreams and assured them that with a lot of hard work, they too can overcome any obstacle while managing diabetes.”

Now 29 years-old, Freeman was diagnosed with diabetes at age 19. “I was told my Olympic career would be over, said Freeman.  “I worried that I wouldn’t be able to compete but I had encouragement from my diabetes health care team, coaches, friends and family. I hope that hearing my story will serve as an inspiration to children as they learn to manage their diabetes more independently.”

Coral Springs Medical Center’s Camp KoralKids provided a safe-haven where diabetic kids ages 5 ½ to 11 become educated on their disease in a fun-filled environment. This two-week day camp operates on donated funds and every needy child is offered a grant. For more information visit www.BrowardHealth.org/camp.

Coral Springs Medical Center is a facility of Broward Health. Broward Health, providing service for more than 50 years, is a nationally recognized community health system offering world class health care services to our neighbors in South Florida.  One of the 10 largest public health systems in the nation, Broward Health operates more than 30 healthcare facilities, including Broward General Medical Center, North Broward Medical Center, Imperial Point Medical Center, Coral Springs Medical Center, Chris Evert Children’s Hospital, Broward Health Weston.  For more information visit www.BrowardHealth.org.