Grangemouth-born family almost lost daughter to type 1 diabetes

A narrow escape from tragedy was the inspiration for a family to commit to a 66-mile trek from Glasgow to Edinburgh to raise awareness of the real danger of type 1 diabetes.

Thursday, 6th May 2021, 1:02 pm
Updated Thursday, 6th May 2021, 1:02 pm

Joel and Annmarie Pickup feared the worst earlier this year when their daughter Taylor began struggling to breathe.

"She was turning blue,” said Joel. “She couldn’t breathe and was turning blue. We had no idea what was happening and in the end two ambulances arrived at the house.”

Unknown to the Pickups, Taylor (8) was a type 1 diabetic.

Taylor Pickup almost died because no one knew she was a type 1 diabetic

After her life threatening ordeal, young Taylor had to undergo a major lifestyle change which involves a strict diet and four injections of insulin per day.

Joel said: "We wanted to do something to try and get the point across about type 1 diabetes and how we nearly lost our daughter. The thing about type 1 diabetes is you are born with it and there is no cure, it’s not like type 2 diabetes which people can get because of their lifestyles.”

The Pickups, Joel (34) Annmarie (33), Jack (10), Taylor and Aiden (7), moved away from Grangemouth to Lincoln for Joel’s work, but the family are heading back to their old stomping ground in August when they take on a two-day, 66 mile walk from Glasgow to Edinburgh, via Falkirk to raise funds and awareness for Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF).

The organisation is committed to eradicating type 1 diabetes and JDRF research has led to new developments in diabetes technology and treatment which is laying the foundations for a cure.

The charity also supports everyone living with type 1 diabetes, by working with policy makers to increase availability of treatments and by providing information and resources to help people manage their condition.

Joel said: “Towards the end of the first day we will visit Falkirk Wheel and set up a stall there to raise awareness of type 1 diabetes and the work of JDRF. Then we will head for Edinburgh on the second day.”

The Pickups have set up a Just Giving page and have so far raised almost £600 for JDRF.