Type 1 Diabetes: Nate's Story

Nathan Skoubye is a pretty remarkable young man. At 17, he has just completed his Eagle Scout service project to support children and teens newly diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. 

Nathan chose his project because he remembers what it was like when he was diagnosed with diabetes almost five years ago and had to stay in the hospital for three days.

Nate wanted to make the hospital stay a little more comfortable for newly-diagnosed kids. He also wanted them to know they are “not alone” in dealing with diabetes. He organized about 60 people to make blankets for children and teens to use during their hospital stay. Each blanket had a personalized letter from Nate, talking about his life experience with diabetes.

Part of his letter reads:

nate"Right before I was diagnosed, I had started to run track, but it was really hard to keep up with the other kids because I did not have a lot of energy, and I was constantly hungry. I also developed a problem of falling asleep in my classes, which was not normal for me. My dad thought he recognized the symptoms of type 1 diabetes in me. He was right.

"Now four years later, since I have followed advice from doctors, I am really healthy and am able to do the things that I want to do. I am a Boy Scout and I go on lots of campouts. I also run track and have a personal record of 5:32 in the mile. I recently reached a one rep max bench press of 225 lbs. I am also a pro at deciding how many carbs are in an item of food by looking at it.

"You can do anything with diabetes: all it takes is the discipline to take your insulin when you need to and to check your blood sugar often. I have had a great success taking care of my diabetes and you can too. I wish you the best, never give up."

Nate's accomplishments and future plans

Anyone involved in scouting knows how difficult it is to reach the Eagle Scout level. It requires the candidate to earn 21 merit badges, live by the Scout Oath and the Scout Law, show leadership skills in a project helpful to any school, religious institution or a community, and a few other requirements — all of which Nate achieved in order to earn the Eagle Scout rank.

Nate has also participated in many camping trips including a five-day backpacking trip in the Catskill Mountains, where he had to carry his shelter, sleeping bag, food, diabetes supplies — everything he needed to survive in the woods. Nate is going to earn his Eagle Scout very soon and is very excited about it. In addition to scouting, Nate runs track and is very active in his church.

After he graduates from high school, Nate plans to dedicate two years of his life to do mission work before moving on to college to become an engineer.

Nate’s Eagle Scout service project has made a difference in the lives of many children with diabetes. We congratulate him for his accomplishments and for his spirit of caring for others.


Originally posted: December 2013