diabetes

Diabetes Legends: Robert P. Krause – who lived with type 1 for 85 years

Few people live lives as rich and accomplished as Robert P. Krause, and he did it all while meticulously managing his blood glucose levels. So much so that he lived to the age of 90; few have lived with type 1 diabetes for longer than his 85 years. He’s very much top of my “People who make me feel lazy” list.

Robert – or Bob, as he preferred to be known, was born in Syracuse, New York to Frank and Helen Krause. At the age of five he was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes, and by the age of six he was injecting himself with insulin.

Bob maintained this incredible attitude to diabetes management throughout his life. When he visited his doctor, he would be accompanied by huge stacks of blood sugar charts and data he produced to track his condition.

He went to University, gaining a BSc from the University of Detroit and an MSc in Engineering from the University of Washington in Seattle.

His career as an engineer went from strength. He served as Professor of Engineering from 1947 to 1955, before joining General Dynamics Convair Division in San Diego. As if that wasn’t impressive enough, Bob worked on the Atlas Rocket Program, which was all about launching astronauts into space.

Religion provided a great moral backbone to Bob’s life. He said that “God would allow life to throw people a curve in order not to be complacent and to see the greatness of God,” according to his daughter, Anne Bowman.

In fact, Bob founded the St. Mary Magdalene Catholic Church in the 1950s, serving as Eucharistic minister and lector. Bob never waned in his commitment to the church. Aged 87 and crippled with arthritis, he joined the choir as a baritone. He needed a walker to get around, but he could still sing.

Bob surrounded himself with a strong family unit. He was married to his wife, Kathleen Krause, for 58 years. He had a daughter, the aforementioned Anne Bowman, a son named Tom, a brother named Jim, and eight grandchildren. Another brother died from type 1 diabetes, a year before Bob was diagnosed.

Sadly, Bob passed away in 2012, aged 90, due to acute leukaemia.

“Even to his last breath his blood sugar was normal and he was checking every two days before he died,” says his daughter. “So you could say he beat diabetes all the way to the end. His life gave hope to so many.”

image source: utsandiego.com

Information adapted from utsandiego.com ')}

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