Letters to the Editor

Letters to the editor for April 17

Letters to the editor must be submitted online -- handwritten letters or letters on paper cannot be accepted.
Letters to the editor must be submitted online -- handwritten letters or letters on paper cannot be accepted.

Make insulin affordable

Did you know that nearly half of American adults have diabetes or pre-diabetes? In Washington state alone, 640,000 people are living with diabetes. This epidemic costs Washington approximately $5 billion each year.

The everyday reality of this disease is staggering, both nationally and right here at home. I was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes 15 years ago, and ever since then have made it a priority to fight for awareness and research funding to help people like me work toward finding a cure for the millions of us living with diabetes nationwide.

That’s why I joined the American Diabetes Association at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, DC, with my brother Aiden to raise awareness about this epidemic and advocate that Congress make diabetes a national priority. While in the other Washington, Aiden and I met with several of our representatives including staff from Patty Murray’s office and Maria Cantwell, to discuss the importance of insulin affordability and research funding for diabetes programs.

I urge all of our elected officials to work with the ADA to change the trajectory of the diabetes epidemic – millions of Americans are counting on their leadership and commitment to find a better path forward and moving us closer to a cure. Together, we can change the everyday reality for all those impacted by this disease, and stop diabetes from becoming an everyday reality for millions more.

Heather E Berg, Lacey

Tim Bittrick: True death with dignity

“The moment we label suicide as an act of dignity, we imply that people ... are undignified for not ending our lives, or worse, we are a costly burden for society. What a lonely, uncharitable and fake world we live in if we think it is somehow undignifying to let people see us suffer, to love us and to care for us to the end. ...”

These are the words of Lizz, a young mother of four who was diagnosed with cancer in Portland and whose video is featured on the reallifecatholic.com website. These are words Tim Bittrick lived by to the very end.

Tim, a faithful Catholic, a teacher, a father, and a friend, passed away March 28. He chose to live, love and fight until he died. He chose to spend every single day with those he loved. He chose to let those who loved him savor every moment of his presence in their life. He did so with gratitude and most of all with immense and profound faith in God, truly believing God has the final word on life and death, and we are not to control or take life. We are here to give and to love life to the end.

Because of his faith, Tim understood the most profound and deeper meaning of freedom. A freedom from selfishness and control on our life. A freedom that brings peace and courage to the end.

Thank you, Tim, for showing us true death with dignity.

Benedetta Reece, Olympia