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2016 Kellion Medal

60 years

Presented at 63rd Annual General Meeting of The Diabetic Association of South Australia Inc. Tuesday 25 October 2016, 10.00am at Diabetes SA, 159 Sir Donald Bradman Drive, Hilton SA 5033. Click here to download a copy of the printed booklet.

Diabetes SA is proud to announce the Kellion Victory Medal Recipients for 2015/2016, including:

Deane Meatheringham

deane meatheringhamI am very thankful to have lived so long and so well as in insulin dependant diabetic. The multiple warnings given to me about the consequences that diabetic problems would bring if I did not take my condition seriously did not cause me to expect I would reach 76 years and still be working part time.

At 16 years old I commenced work as an apprentice carpenter and joiner full of expectancy and ambitions. I had been selected for an‚ ‘Empire Games’ (now Commonwealth Games) road racing cycling training team. High hopes collapsed when I was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. I was admitted to hospital not knowing what type 1 diabetes was. In light medical ward I was quickly faced with realisation that I had a serious illness, and confronted with my mortality as many other elderly patients died during my six weeks of stabilisation. I was privileged to be put under the care of Dr Hetzel who I later continued to see as a private patient.

After hospitalisation I returned to my employment but was advised to stop competitive cycling. My life had completely changed and it seemed that the discipline of managing regular injections, strict diet and regular urine testing focussed my living completely around diabetes. Looking back I believe I was severely depressed.

My attitude to life and the future changed dramatically when I became a Christian. My diabetes did not heal, I did not become ‘religious’ but after a time I stopped fighting diabetes and began to live with it. Instead of fighting the surf I began to ride the waves. This was a much more peaceful way to live.

I trained as a Methodist Minister and was later ordained. I met my wife Rosslyn and we lived at Wudinna where our two daughters were born. It was here that I had my first major hypo, failing to wake up one morning. Rosslyn a former nurse called our local GP who injected me with glucose. I woke and went on with a day’s work.

We then had a series of country appointments where I made the discovery that many GPs were ignorant about type 1 diabetes. Management became difficult until we moved to an urban ministry and my new GP referred me to Dr Pat Phillips. He introduced me to computer blood testing rather than urine testing and better awareness of diet. This reorientated my life.

My Mother and Father were very good to me initially in taking on a strict diabetic diet for the whole family, and even injecting me in the upper arm when we used heavy syringes. Rosslyn has helped me, with love and humour to live with diabetes (and hypos). Our children have been wonderfully supportive.

I did not retire until I was 72 and am currently serving as a part time pastor with a country congregation. I am thankful for those who have treated me and for organisations like Diabetes SA who have made available tools to assist living with diabetes. People sometimes say to me that my good health is because of my self discipline. There is some truth in that. But it has more to do with the mercy of God. I am thankful to have such a rich and fulfilling life with diabetes.

Back to 2015/2016 Kellion Victory Medal Recipients

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