I was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes in August 1993 at the Naval Hospital in Pensacola Florida while serving in the United States Marine Corps. My squad leader, Lance Corporal Kelly, and other superiors of mine couldn’t figure out why couldn’t run from here to there without collapsing from exhaustion. I was at a loss to explain it also so Lance Corporal Kelly ordered me to report to sick bay.
This order, which I dutifully followed, was an exemplary act of leadership. If I was malingering, which he probably thought I was, then a trip to sick bay should bear that out. If there was a real problem then that should also be discovered. My blood glucose that afternoon was 252 mg / dl. Although not stunningly high, I have anecdotally heard of initial diagnoses readings as high as 800+, it was clearly high enough to indicate a diagnosis of diabetes. After leaving sick bay so I could make afternoon formation (nobody told me what was going on) I was tracked down and taken to and admitted to the hospital. At this point I was diagnosed with diabetic ketoacidosis, and type I diabetes.