Minnesota Diabetes Walk: Why We Walk

Team Photo of Dave's Dashers

Hello, my name is Kevin Kaliher. I am the team captain for Dave’s Dashers. We have been participating in the American Diabetes Association’s Step Out Walk since 1998. We formed this team in honor of my father Dave Kaliher. Dave lost his battle with Diabetes on January 2, 1998. He was only 60 years old. You never hear the saying “lost his battle with diabetes”, but that is what he did. Diabetes has so many effects on other parts of the body, the heart, circulation, eye sight, etc. Unfortunately, my dad suffered from all of these. He had open heart surgery in 1991 (during the Halloween Blizzard), had both of his carotid arteries cleaned out, had laser surgery on his eyes, and amputations of the entire right leg and part of his left. He worked in construction his whole life, and it was really hard to see this big burly man wither away to nothing.

We decided as a family, we did not want anyone else to have to go through this with their loved ones. Dave’s Birthday was August 28th. We decided that we would have a party to celebrate his Birthday the year he passed away. The Dave Kaliher Memorial Birthday Bash for Diabetes was born!! I believe that first year, we raised $500. We decided to turn the money in at the ADA’s Walk called America’s Walk for Diabetes, now known as Step Out: Walk to Stop Diabetes. We went to the walk as a family and enjoyed the time remembering our father.

As the years went on, we finally picked the Saturday after Labor Day as the set day for the party. We have acquired two corporate sponsors who donate between $1500 – $2000 dollars every year. 2012 will be our 15th year participating in the Step Out Walk. So far, we have raised approximately $60,000 over the 14 years. I have also been on the walk committee for the last 12 years. We have a great time every year planning this walk and try to add new and exciting things each year.

This is why we walk. No one should have to see a loved one suffer from this disease. We will be looking for you at this year’s walk. Please come up and say Hi, so we can thank you for participating. Every penny counts in this cause!! Register for Step Out by visiting: www.diabetes.org/stepouttwincities

Kevin Kaliher

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