STANTON — The lives of a local family changed forever in April of 2011.
It was then, 8-year-old Brooken Hansen — son of Brad and Kammie Hansen — was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes, otherwise known as Juvenile Diabetes.
Juvenile Diabetes is named as such because it is typically diagnosed in children and young adults. Just five percent of those with diabetes (25.8 million Americans) has this form of diabetes, where the body is unable to produce insulin, which is needed to break sugar, starches and other foods into energy needed for daily life.
In addition to Brooken there are multiple other Central Montcalm students with the disease.
“I didn’t know a whole lot about it until Brooken was diagnosed with it,” Hansen said. “We had a pretty scary incident in April. There are 10 kids at Central Montcalm that also have this.”
Each day has become a routine for Brooken now. Throughout the day, he checks his blood and gives himself shots, six to eight times a day.
“Brooken doesn’t really look at it like it’s a big deal. We don’t look at it that way,” Hansen said. “Brooken said it’s a bump in the road and it’s not that big of a deal.”
Things are going well for the Hansen family, but Brad wanted to do something more. Brad, a Central Montcalm special education teacher, decided to put together a fundraising effort for Juvenile Diabetes.
Friday evening — at the Central Montcalm Middle School — a spaghetti dinner will be held prior to the girls and boys varsity basketball games between the Hornets and Lakeview Wildcats.
“I presented an idea to my class and they jumped on it. They have brought in over 150 pounds of spaghetti and over 100 pounds of spaghetti sauce,” Hansen said. “We will have coleslaw, cakes, cookies and punch.”
The dinner is available for anyone and just a goodwill donation will be accepted for dinner.
“The kids have done all the work,” Hansen said. “They donated the food and will be serving the food. It’s just a good project for the kids to get involved with.”
Dinner will take place from 4 p.m. till 7 p.m. or until the food runs out. The girls varsity game will begin at 6 p.m with the boys game following.
The Central Montcalm basketball teams will also attend the dinner prior to the games.
“Marty James (girls coach) has been fantastic,” Hansen said. “The girls team will be wearing orange and white uniforms. I believe they have orange headbands and wristbands.”
The money raised will go to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.
In addition, raffled tickets will be sold for various prizes. Prizes include a signed football by the Detroit Lions, a pair of Michigan State basketball tickets, Grand Rapids Griffins tickets and West Michigan Whitecaps tickets along with other prizes.
Orange “Hoops for a Cure” shirts will also be on sale for $10. “
This has got to be a disease they can cure. It just has to be,” Hansen said.
Hansen is hoping for a good turnout, but is nervous at the same time.
“Lakeview has been very supportive,” Hansen said. “I’m nervous because I want it to go well. Everyone I’ve been in contact with has been very supportive and helpful.”