Meet Senior Paralympic Medal Winner Alice Eaddy
Alice Eaddy is a top-level DeafBlind senior athlete who competes at the regional and national levels. While she is DeafBlind, she has also faced challenges from her diabetes. Alice credits Accessible Pharmacy with helping her overcome the barriers of being a DeafBlind diabetic, allowing her to compete in athletic competitions without a problem. Most recently, she competed in the 2021 New Jersey Senior Olympics. She earned two gold medals, one silver, and one bronze in the following events:
- 11.02 Meter Javelin – Gold Medal Winner
- 12.09 Meter Discus – Gold Medal Winner
- 100 Meter Run – 21.7 seconds – Silver Medal Winner
- Cornhole – Bronze Medal Winner
Reflecting on her achievements, Alice told the team at Accessible Pharmacy, “thank you for all of you being on my self care team. Together, I was as prepared as possible to manage my sugars as best I could. All are new personal records.” Alice performed so well, she is automatically eligible to participate in the National Senior Olympic Games next year.
Alice was born DeafBlind and her mother tragically died after childbirth. Left with her father and the rest of her family, she grew up in a home where she wasn’t treated as disabled, and instead spent a lot of her childhood not knowing much about her condition. As Alice grew up and found that she was DeafBlind, she had never considered athletics as something she could do. Even in her work, she would take her students on trips and adventures in which students would participate in activities such as rock climbing. But after encouragement from her now coach, Alice began training and competing in track and field. She was faced with many challenges, such as travelling across New Jersey in order to compete with Blind Athletes, Inc. This was a five-hour journey with multiple forms of transportation. Regardless of her other challenges, Alice was able to compete with top-athletes and became one of them as well. Aforementioned, most recently, she competed in the 2021 New Jersey Senior Olympics.
Although she was a superstar competing in track and field events, Alice still had a looming condition which she was careful of. She was diagnosed as pre-diabetic in 2007 and was dealing with the prospect of becoming diabetic for many years. Unfortunately, Alice developed diabetes at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. If she couldn’t keep her blood sugar reliably under control, then it would place a halt on her athletics. In addition to her diabetes, challenges arose due to her DeafBlindness. As Alice pointed out to me, talking glucose meters were of little help to her and so, she needed a different solution. That’s when she found Accessible Pharmacy. Alice and I spent a while talking as she detailed her complaints about other pharmacies, healthcare providers, and their unpreparedness to help her. But when she spoke about Accessible Pharmacy she said, “Accessible Pharmacy’s [Care Coordinator] spent hours going through the whole process of how to set it up. And I mean, while I was setting it up, I had the meter and I was doing everything he told me to do at the same time he was telling me to do it… he made it easy and not scary…they made it safe, they made it like, ‘Hey, I can really prove to coach that I’ve got this under control in a way that nobody has to be afraid of my health.’ On top of that, they actually paid attention to me, and knew I was already deafblind.” She continued in her reflection of her performance at the games, “thanks to the pharmacy team for all of their setup work. The system rocks when it comes to keeping a girl feel safe and as in control as possible over sugar events that are utterly unpredictable.” Alice uses a FreeStyle Libre 14-Day Meter Glucose Monitoring System.
Featured is first a photo of Alice, her Coach Jennifer Demby, and her guide runner David B. This photo was taken after their 100m run. The second photo features David, her guide runner, helping Alice get her cleats on and the laces taped down before their sprint. The last photo showcases her four medals: three golds, and one bronze.