Scenic classmates help student with diabetes

Ten-year-old Calvin Vaughn describes the size of the needle he has to use for his insulin. The boy has diabetes and needs a $10,000 insulin pump. On Tuesday, a read-a-thon will be held at Scenic Elementary School to help raise the funds for the pump.

Ten-year-old Calvin Vaughn knows all the names for his shots.

One, Lantus, helps keep his blood sugar level throughout the day. The other, Humalog, is fast-acting and helps regulate his blood sugar level on a more case-by-case basis.

Vaughn learned the names of these shots after being diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes on Leap Day, Feb. 29, 2012. He tests his blood every two hours when he’s awake and sometimes during the night to see if he needs an insulin injection. Unlike Type 2 diabetes, which can be controlled through pills and diet, constant insulin regulation is Vaughn’s primary treatment method.

“It’s pretty easy,” Vaughn said of giving himself injections. “They don’t hurt really at all.”

But if he had an insulin pump that he could wear on his side, Vaughn said he would be able to have more free time to spend with his class at Scenic Elementary. The pump would release gradual insulin doses and monitor his blood glucose level so he would only have to put in a new insulin cartridge every three days.

Vaughn’s classmates at Scenic gathered donations from community members and will host a read-a-thon this afternoon at the school to help raise the $8,000 to $10,000 Vaughn needs to purchase an insulin pump. Members of the Grand Junction Fire Department will come to the school in uniform today to read to Scenic students for an hour. Vaughn said he appreciates all the work his schoolmates have done to help him and said the school is like a family.

“They’re very caring about everyone there. One person has raised $140 already and two of my friends have set a goal to raise $1,000 each. That’s quite a bit of money,” he said.

Calvin’s mom, Becca Vaughn, said her son’s diagnosis has “definitely been life-changing.” She said Calvin has been doing well monitoring his blood sugar and the family is learning everything they can about diabetes. She said employees and students at Scenic have helped make the situation easier.

“Everyone there is very understanding when he has to leave class,” she said.

The Read-a-Thon will help earn some but likely not all of the money needed for a pump. Donations can still be made to the Calvin Vaughn Medical Fund at Grand Junction Federal Credit Union.


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