Name: Mark Kerwin
Hometown: East Toronto, ON
“Team Diabetes global health and wellness champion”
By: Michael Jacoby
Mark Kerwin is a man of simple pleasures. He loves working in his backyard garden and he loves his community and neighbours in East Toronto. Mark is someone who is passionate, loves people, pushes those around him to excel, and strives to channel his positive energy into making a genuine impact on the lives of others.
When Team Diabetes made its first trip to Edinburgh almost two years ago, Mark was there – along with his mother, Erika, who is one of his biggest supporters. Mark needed that support in his early 20s, when he was first diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. Feelings of denial and despair led to physical and emotional rebellion. But over time, these feelings would subside, and Mark would go on to graduate from the University of Guelph and those difficult early days.
Today, feeling younger and healthier than ever, Mark continues to experiment with different diet and exercise programs in his search for the elusive “perfect balance.” Life these days is less of a calculated risk, and more of a journey to enjoy and savour.
Role models like Mark also have a special place in their community, along with the ability to empower individuals to be the change they so desire. “For me,” he says, “Team Diabetes is all about cross-country connections.”
During a particularly active twelve-month span Mark crisscrossed the globe, running in three marathons and hiking a volcanic crater. In doing so, he raised significant funds and awareness to help the Canadian Diabetes Association carry out its mission – to help people living with diabetes to lead healthy lives while it works to find a cure.
Living with type 1 diabetes has not deterred him from living a life without limitations. He lives a life of joyful song and dance, and a life of purpose. He draws his greatest motivation from his family: his life partner, Sarosh, and his beautiful daughters.
Last month, the couple returned home after travelling to Munich with Team Diabetes. They chose to extend their trip in order to retrace the visit Mark had many years earlier, just prior to his diagnosis – a journey representing a complete circle of life.
Just before the trip, he asked Team Diabetes if he could have a new running singlet. His mainstay, a Team Diabetes sunburst, was starting to wear. He’s going to need it. Mark is already registered for three upcoming Team Diabetes events – in Jamaica, Florida and China. His participation will raise much-needed funds to support people living with diabetes across Canada.
Mark believes he will see diabetes cured in his lifetime, and he looks forward to the day when this endeavor will become a reality. Until then, he’ll be excited as always to see his “family” of Team Diabetes enthusiasts at the next event.
You can make a difference by joining Team Diabetes – to learn more or register for an event in your area visit teamdiabetes.ca.