...to meet Ron Santo, I encourage you to take the time to do so.
For those not familiar with Ron Santo, he played 3rd base for the Chicago Cubs and one year with the Chicago White Sox. Now, he is a radio broadcaster for the Cubs.
He was diagnosed as a Type 1 when he turned 18 years young and was told he had only 25 years to live (sheesh!). For most of his baseball career, he hid his battle with Diabetes from the public and the media. If you want to see more about him, check out a documentary called, "This Old Cub". It's great.
Anyway, I was looking at the news of the Hall of Fame voting and was thinking of Santo. IMO, he belongs in the HoF for many reasons. I had the chance to meet Mr. Santo at a local event about ten years ago and was amazed by his genuine good nature. I was in line to get an autograph and noticed he was making small talk with everyone he was talking to. (SIDE NOTE: I always feel like I'm bothering celebs whenever I talk to them because they are used to the same old questions and discussions over and over again.)
Finally, it was my turn to talk with Mr. Santo. I think the first thing I said was, "Mr. Santo, my name is Rick. I am a type 1 diabetic, too. How are your blood sugars doing?" I felt like that may have been the worst thing to say, at the time. I figured, "Who would want to talk about a medical condition?"
He shook my hand, gave it a firm squeeze and swung his arm around me with his other arm. He said, "I'm in great shape! How are you doing with yours?" He couldn't have been any more comforting. He continued to ask which insulin I was on, how I liked my meter, if I was dieting and exercising, etc. The people in line behind me were respectful and patient (which I was very thankful for). He must have talked to me for a good five or six minutes, but it felt like hours. To this day, no one has been as welcoming and warm as he was. Those five or six minutes continue to give me compassion for anyone that wants to talk about anything they may be going through. Mr. Santo may be the coolest celebrity I have ever met.
And, as an added bonus, Mr. Santo has helped raise over $50 million for JDRF. He is a huge asset to the organization and continues to raise awareness and funds, daily.
So, if you ever see an event that Ron Santo is attending, I highly recommend you take the time to do so. You'll be grateful that you did. I know I am. Thanks, Mr. Santo.