St. Joseph’s celebrates patients’ diabetes due diligence

Nov. 26, 2018

The Diabetes Half Century Awards for patients who have reached 50 or more years living with diabetes will be presented on Nov. 28 at St. Joseph’s Hospital.

London, Ontario – Mary Ann Morgan calls it an “uninvited, unwelcome, very demanding, 24/7 visitor that wants its own way at any cost.” She could have become a victim, says the Londoner, “or I could learn to live with it and become a master negotiator to keep it in check. So that’s what I did. The consequences otherwise would have been devastating.”

The “it” is type 1 diabetes – a disease Morgan has lived with for a remarkable 60 years. Diagnosed as a young teen in 1958, this mother and ‘Baba’ (grandmother) refused to let diabetes define who she was. Instead, the condition gifted her with resiliency and strength.

“This disease builds character. It strengthens the core of who you are if you don’t allow it to define you or run your life. It helped shaped who I am today.”

Read Morgan’s full story, including how diabetes discrimination nearly derailed her quest to become a nurse. She is among this year’s recipients of the Diabetes Half Century Awards being presented on Nov. 28 at St. Joseph’s Hospital in London. Recipients are patients with insulin-dependent diabetes who have reached 50 or more years since their diagnosis. They are honoured for their personal commitment and diligence in looking after their health, and for acting as a role model to all those living with the condition. Each recipient receives a print of London’s Banting House and a special medal to commemorate their achievement.

The Diabetes Half Century Awards are presented annually by St. Joseph’s Health Care London and Novo Nordisk Canada. This year there are 17 recipients. Media are invited to attend and hear their stories:

What: Diabetes Half Century Awards, Nov. 28 at 11:00 am

Where: St. Joseph’s Hospital, 268 Grosvenor St. London, Zone E, Level 1, meeting room E1-126

For more information contact:

Dahlia Reich, Communication & Public Affairs
St. Joseph’s Health Care London
519 646-6100 ext. 65294, pager 10117

About St. Joseph’s Health Care London

Renowned for compassionate care, St. Joseph’s Health Care London is a leading academic health care centre in Canada dedicated to helping people live to their fullest by minimizing the effects of injury, disease and disability through excellence in care, teaching and research. Through partnership with Lawson Health Research Institute and our collaborative engagement with other health care and academic partners, St. Joseph’s has become an international leader in the areas of: chronic disease management; medical imaging; specialized mental health care; rehabilitation and specialized geriatrics; and surgery. St. Joseph’s operates through a wide range of hospital, clinic and long-term and community-based settings, including: St. Joseph’s Hospital; Parkwood Institute; Mount Hope Centre for Long Term Care; and Southwest Centre for Forensic Mental Health Care. For more information, visit

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