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Celebrities with Diabetes

Diabetes is not the reason not to become famous. Our history remembers a number of examples of celebrities who have diabetes, including about fifty sportsmen, politicians, actors, and writers. Diabetes did not prevent them from basking in their glory; a person should only go for it!

One of the greatest sportsmen with diabetes is well-known football-player Edison “Edson” Arantes do Nascimento, best known by his nickname Pelé:


Another notorious sportsman Bobby Clarke, who is a Canadian hockey player, suffers from diabetes. The illness started when he was thirteen, and of course it was insulin-dependent diabetes type I. However, he loved hockey. He took great interest in it since he was three, and he certainly had no plans for quitting it because of diabetes. And he didn’t: he played amateur for 19 years, he had been playing professionally for 15 years, and now he “retired” and manages one hockey team in USA.

A history of American sports knows other sportsmen with diabetes, but as opposed to Bobby Clarke, they had non-insulin-dependent type of disease. Perhaps, most remarkable person among all is an American Aidan Bail. Bail, being an insulin-dependent diabetic, started a marathon 6 500 kilometers long, crossed Northern-American continent and established Diabetes Research Foundation (spending solely his own funds).

Bobby Clarke

Tennis player Bill Talbert, who won 33 national titles in USA, died in the age of 80 in 1999. Tallbert suffered from type I diabetes since he was ten. He had two injuries in 1992, and from that moment his health started to deteriorate. Tallbert twice was the only finalist in USA championships. He lived with diabetes for 70 years.

Bill Talbert

One of the most notorious artists with diabetes is a writer Ernest Hemingway:

Ernest Hemingway

A leggy femm and television star Mary Tyler Moore, actress and dancer, who received five Emmy Awards:

Mary Tyler Moore

A theater, television and movie actress Sue Gaetzman wrote and staged a play titled “Sugar of the Blood”. It is an autobiographic play, and it tells the story of Sue’s life who lives with diabetes for 31 years and who had a number of peculiar events for last 18 months.

Sue Gaetzman

Great black singer Ella Fitzgerald is also among diabetics. She died in the age of 79.

Ella Fitzgerald

Famous French impressionist-painter Paul Cézanne, who was born in 1839. They say his “blurred” style is a result of diabetic aftereffect on his eyes.

Paul Cézanne

They were the first:

Leonard Thompson. He was the first patient who was saved by insulin, invented in 1922 in Toronto. He was 12.

Leonard Thompson

Doctor George Minot. He was the first diabetic to receive Nobel prize in medicine in 1934.
George Minot Scott ColemanThe first man with diabetes who crossed the English Channel in 1996.

Scott Coleman

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