Michael Rich, son of JDRF Board Member Joannie Rich and grandson of Elegance founder Jack Rich, appears to be like any normal 19-year-old young man. Except for one key difference: Michael is living with type 1 diabetes (T1D).

In T1D—which is diagnosed in people of all ages, both children and adults—a person’s pancreas stops producing enough insulin to survive. Insulin is required to regulate sugar in the bloodstream and maintain healthy body chemistry. Unlike type 2 diabetes, T1D is not treatable by diet, exercise, and lifestyle change. It is a severe medical condition with no known cause or cure, and requires constant management. People with T1D must constantly monitor their blood sugar levels and administer insulin via shots or an insulin pump, multiple times every day. Even vigilant management does not ward against T1D complications such as heart attack, stroke, blindness, and amputation.

As many as 3 million Americans are living with T1D, and the number is growing
every day. Every year in the United States alone, more than 30,000 children and
adults are diagnosed with the dangerous and costly disease.

JDRF is the largest charitable supporter of T1D research worldwide. Money raised for JDRF by The Elegance at Hershey will aid the organization’s goal of improving the lives of all people affected by T1D by accelerating progress on the most promising opportunities for curing, better treating, and preventing the disease. For more information, visit www.jdrf.org.