In the world of competitive swimming, type 1 athlete Gary Hall is a living legend. He was the oldest Olympic swimmer in eighty years when he won gold in the last Summer Olympics. He’s the fourth most decorated Olympian of all time.
And he’s a vocal spokesman for diabetes. He even manages to use his mainstream sponsors to advocate for diabetes awareness: You may have seen his image on one of 16 million Barbasol shaving cream cans, every sale of which generated funds for the JDRF. Not bad for someone who had absolutely no sponsors when he was first diagnosed with diabetes in 1999.
Gary intends to do just as well in the upcoming 2008 Olympics, despite the fact that he’ll be competing against young swimmers a fraction of his age. It’s highly possible that he will become the first swimmer in history to win a gold medal in the same event three Olympics in a row. In recognition of his achievements, he’s just been signed to a four-year contract by Speedo, a portion of the earnings from which will go to his diabetes foundation. Furthermore, every year of the contract, Speedo will make a donation to the diabetes charity of Gary’s choice. It’s just one of Gary’s efforts to bring diabetes awareness to the world of sports and the world at large.