Hometown: Conception Bay South, Newfoundland
To set the Relay in motion, 13-year-old Jacob Manning was selected as the first 25th Anniversary Relay Medal-Bearer for being a true Difference Maker. From Conception Bay South, Newfoundland, Jacob is a committed volunteer in his community, and encourages youth to lead active healthy lifestyles, a passion sparked by his diagnosed of Juvenile Diabetes in 2008. Each year, Jacob participates in the JDRF Walk to raise funds for a cure for Diabetes and he has won several public speaking contests promoting his cause. Jacob also volunteers with the Canadian Diabetes Association, recently supporting the Royal St. John's Regatta, North America's oldest sporting event.
Inspired by Rick Hansen's attitude to live a healthy and active lifestyle, Manning was chosen to participate in the Rick Hansen Relay after entering the online contest at RickHansenRelay.com.
Jacob is excited to be selected as first Medal Bearer. "I have the chance to promote healthy living in spite of a challenge. It's a great opportunity to meet people with challenges in life, like myself," said Jacob. "You can't give into challenges and let them control your life. You have to adjust your way of living, but always live a healthy and active lifestyle.
Jacob credits his nurse Donna Hagerty as the biggest difference maker in his life. Jacob said Donna has been there for him since the day he got his first Insulin Pump. "Donna makes living with diabetes so much more positive and never looks at anything as impossible!" said Jacob.
Jacob will run his 250-metre segment in honour of his Grandmother Julia Manning who recently passed away and spent the latter stage of her life in wheelchair.
This fall, Jacob will enter Grade 8 at Frank Roberts Jr. High in Conception Bay South and hopes to earn a spot on the basketball team.
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