Vail, Colorado - FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
We all need a hero! Someone who takes time to care, reaches out and inspires us. In spite of overwhelming challenges that someone provides incentive and makes a difference.
She founded the world’s first Cryoglobulinemia Vasculitis Organization (CVO). CVO's mission is to champion advocacy programs regarding the care, treatment, research, diagnosis and the use of service dogs for those suffering from cryoglobulinemia and associated conditions. CVO educates patients, healthcare professionals and the public to bring about greater awareness and to help provide support to patients, their families, and those who love them.
She rescued a broken Italian greyhound (IG) from a local hospital, nurtured her back to life and now they save each other daily. Gracie is the world's first IG service dog helping a woman live with cryoglobulinemia. Diane hasn't been hospitalized overnight since they became partners 11 years ago.
Miracles Happen Diane’s legs were almost amputated when they filled with blood, swelled and turned black, but a miracle occurred. Her legs returned to normal size and color, however due to the resulting damage and permanent need to keep her extremities warm and elevated, she now uses a wheelchair with special leg extensions.
“No matter what I'm so grateful! Being more independent is a BIG goal for me personally as well as for our outreach work. The van will be used for speaking events, to run the foster/adoption children to appointments and so much more!"
Volunteers Make A Difference
You can make a difference, just like Diane who is triumphing in the face of adversity.
“Diane isn’t just a local hero, she is an international one,” says Laurie choking back the tears. “It’s amazing how she overcomes the challenges of living with disability and still helps people who are hurting, broken animals and children in need. I want to encourage everyone to vote for Diane, she is truly deserving of this honor.” Laurie was a school teacher, like Diane, but suffered a stroke yet Diane offered her hope and possibilities by welcoming her as a volunteer with the SCwSG/CVO team.
Diane born on her mother Joan's birthday, lost her Feb. 18, 2012, to Multiple Myeloma cancer. Two days later, Diane's best friend lost her battle with Huntington's Disease. Feeling sad and alone, Diane thought more intensely about her efforts to help children,
She and Paul have no children of their own, but she spent 15 years as a professor and school teacher, teaching all grades and subjects to students who were severely disabled, blind, deaf, autistic, down syndrome, cocaine babies, severely abused and juvenile delinquents.
In all her spare time, she coached swimming and track and continued her education earning a Ph.D. in human services and counseling psychology.
In November 2012, she talked with Paul about becoming foster parents. Paul is a sensible man and had many excellent reasons why this was not a good idea. Not the least of which was Diane's health and of course finances.
They prayed about it and one day Paul finally said, "OK, go for it!"
So they did.
They say it's been everything they thought it would be: Time-intensive, painful, costly, emotional, wonderful and memorable while filling their home with life!
"One day when I'm gone, our children, those we foster for a while or those we give forever homes to, will know their mom loved them, and they will pass that transforming love on," Diane said.
Diane needs your help to get votes in. Voting is open daily to all. One vote per a day with an extra vote awarded if you answer a disability question correctly. The top three winners will be awarded a minivan. With a little help from her friends, Diane and her family can win!
Tax deductible donations are always welcome.
Click Here to Vote Now
The Dikes are unable to post pictures of the children in foster/adoption care for their protection and privacy.