WASHINGTON, March 3 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- College Football Hall of Fame coach Bobby Bowden will be featured on March's episode of Sharing Miracles – a 30-minute public affairs television program that tells the compelling and inspirational stories of real patients. Sharing Miracles airs on more than 300 television stations nationwide.
The head coach for Florida State for more than three decades, Bobby Bowden retired in January with a coaching career spanning 50 years. He won two national championships and tallied a remarkable 389 wins – the second most wins in college football history – trailing only his long-time friend and rival, Joe Paterno of Penn State.
However, Coach Bowden's career was nearly sidelined when – in his seventies – he was diagnosed with diabetes while seeing his doctor for a routine physical. He says in this month's Sharing Miracles: "I was surprised when he told me about the diabetes because I had felt so good. He told me I wouldn't need to take insulin, but that he'd put me on medicine to help regulate the disease and told me that I needed to watch my diet and get more exercise. But I felt so good, I didn't feel like I had to do all that!"
He quickly learned a painful lesson. "My doctor set me straight. He told me that it didn't matter if I feel good now. What matters is what could happen down the road. I could go blind, lose a leg, or even have a heart attack. Since then, I behave much better. I cheat some, but I don't cheat like I used to."
Recently retired from football, Bowden is spreading the message to fans to get checked for diabetes, even if they feel healthy. He says, "If we just do what the doctors say to, we may be able to live a long time."
He also urges people with diabetes to accept help from loved ones in making the changes that the doctor recommends: "It's not just my doctor. My wife helps me, my kids have helped me. Even my secretaries – they won't let me eat what I want!"
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly 24 million Americans have diabetes. What's more, if current trends continue, it is estimated that one in three Americans will develop diabetes in their lifetime, potentially losing 10-15 years of their lives. To help in the fight against diabetes, America's pharmaceutical research and biotechnology companies currently have 150 medicines in development to treat the disease.
Also featured in this month's episode are Super Bowl champions Jerome Bettis of the Pittsburgh Steelers and Tedy Bruschi of the New England Patriots, who speak about their experiences playing against Bowden's Seminoles when in college. Bowden's son, University of North Alabama football coach Terry Bowden, makes an appearance as well.
In addition, Leave it to Beaver star Jerry Mathers discusses his own experiences living with diabetes, and Oscar-winning actress Marcia Gay Harden speaks about the importance of developing new medicines to treat breast cancer.
Future episodes of the program will feature Academy Award-nominated actress Lorraine Bracco, who suffered from depression, and Boston Red Sox general manager Terry Francona, who battles deep vein thrombosis.
Previous episodes of Sharing Miracles have featured Bettis, Mathers, Bruschi and Harden, as well as actor Danny Glover, who suffered from epilepsy; legendary Major League Baseball manager and cancer survivor Joe Torre; Grammy Award-winning country music superstar Naomi Judd, who overcame Hepatitis C; pioneering rapper and actor Ice-T, who speaks about his battle with heart disease; baseball great Darryl Strawberry, who twice beat colon cancer; former Philadelphia Phillies star and ESPN commentator John Kruk, who overcame testicular cancer; Emmy Award-winning actor Joey Pantoliano, who suffers from clinical depression; Pro Football Hall-of-Famer Mike Ditka, who suffers from heart disease; and Aaron Boone, a baseball star who returned to the field after undergoing open-heart surgery.
Other guests on the show have included two-time NCAA tournament-winning University of Connecticut basketball coach Jim Calhoun, who has overcome cancer three times; NBA Hall-of-Famer Dominique Wilkins, who has diabetes; Boston Red Sox star pitcher Jon Lester, who has battled non-Hodgkin's lymphoma; Emmy-nominated former star of Family Ties Meredith Baxter, who survived breast cancer; Olympic gold medal winners Mark Spitz (high cholesterol), Bruce Jenner (attention deficit disorder), and Greg Louganis (HIV); syndicated television talk show host Montel Williams, who suffers from multiple sclerosis; pop icon and Broadway star Deborah Gibson, who has suffered from devastating anxiety attacks; and Pro Football Hall-of-Famer and Super Bowl Champion Len Dawson, who survived prostate cancer.
Sharing Miracles airs on 325 television stations across the country in the following cities: Anchorage, AK; Decatur, AL; Harrison, AR; Jones, AR; Mountain Home, AR; Tempe, AZ; Bath, ME; Casa Grande, AZ; Chino Valley, AZ; Anaheim, CA; Compton, CA; Coralville, CO; Del Mar, CA; Gilroy, CA; Hayward, CA; Pacifica, CA; Pasadena, CA; Petaluma, CA; San Andreas, CA; Santa Barbara, CA; Arvada, CO; Aurora, CO; Fort Collins, CO; Golden, CO; Greeley, CO; Longmont, CO; Northglenn, CO; Thornton, CO; Bridgeport, CT; Canaan, CT; East Haven, CT; Hamden, CT; Hartford, CT; Madison, CT; North Haven, CT; Plainville, CT; Simsbury, CT; Wallingford, CT; Brooksville, FL; Cape Coral, FL; Coral Springs, FL; Fort Lauderdale, FL; Fort Myers, FL; Port Orange, FL; MacDill AFB, FL; Tampa, FL; Palm Coast, FL; Vero Beach, FL; Atlanta, GA; Dallas, GA; Douglasville, GA; Fort Oglethorpe, GA; LaGrange, GA; Lawrenceville, GA; Hilo, HI; Ames, IA; Des Moines, IA; Fairfield, IA; Mount Vernon, IA; Olin, IA; Muscatine, IA; Boise, ID; Coeur d'Alene, ID ; Moscow, ID ; Soda Springs, ID ; Addison, IL; Aurora, IL; Batavia, IL; Darien, IL; Galesburg, IL; Glen Ellyn, IL; Glenview, IL; Joliet, IL; Lake Forest, IL; Naperville, IL; Plainfield, IL; Peoria, IL; Rock Island, IL; Romeoville, IL; Urbana, IL; Wheaton, IL; Austin, IN; Bloomington, IN; Connersville, IN; Fort Wayne, IN; Richmond, IN; Derby, KS; Haysville, KS; Lawrence, KS; Olathe, KS; Ottawa, KS; Covington, KY; Highland Heights, KY; Louisville, KY; Middlesboro, KY; Paducah, KY; Bossier City, LA; Houma, LA; Lafayette, LA; Mandeville, LA; New Orleans, LA; Amherst, MA; Arlington, MA; Boston, MA; Boylston, MA; Brookline, MA; Carver, MA; Chelmsford, MA; Dracut, MA; Easthampton, MA; Foxboro, MA; Framingham, MA; Haverhill, MA; Holden, MA; Hopkinton, MA; Leominster, MA; Longmeadow, MA; Lynn, MA; Marion, MA; Newburyport, MA; Quincy, MA; Reading, MA; Sandwich, MA; Wakefield, MA; Wilbraham, MA; Worcester, MA; Bel Air, MD; Columbia, MD; Easton, MD; Greenbelt, MD; Largo, MD; Rockville, MD; Bath, ME; Boothbay Harbor, ME; Bridgton, ME; Brunswick, ME; Fairfield, ME; Farmington, ME; Madison, ME; Mexico, ME; Ann Arbor, MI; Byron, MI; Cadillac, MI; Farmington Hills, MI; Holland, MI; Kalamazoo, MI; Lake Orion, MI; Manistee, MI; Monroe, MI; Portage, MI; Romeo, MI; Waterford, MI; Wyandotte, MI; Blaine, MN; Bloomington, MN; Champlin, MN; Coon Rapids, MN; Duluth, MN; Fergus Falls, MN; Hibbing, MN; Hutchinson, MN; Inver Grove Heights, MN; Le Seuer, MN; Minneapolis, MN; Rosemont, MN; Spring Park, MN; Stillwater, MN; White Bear Lake, MN; Brentwood, MI; Hudsonville, MI; Blue Springs, MO; Columbia, MO; Independence, MO; Ste. Genevieve, MO; Hillsboro, MS; Jackson, MS; Vicksburg, MS; Great Falls, MT; Helena, MT; Albemarle, NC; Charlotte, NC; Knightdale, NC; New Bern, NC; Wingate, NC; Fargo, ND; Jamestown, ND; Grand Island, NE; Hastings, NE; Lincoln, NE; Omaha, NE; Claremont, NH; Derry, NH; Durham, NH; Keene, NH; Londonderry, NH; Manchester, NH; North Conway, NH; Wolfeboro, NH; Bloomfield, NJ; Jersey City, NJ; Metuchen, NJ; Montclair, NJ; Piscataway, NJ; Pomona, NJ; Princeton, NJ; Statewide, NJ; Summit, NJ; Wayne, NJ; Albuquerque, NM; Los Alamos, NM; Rio Rancho, NM; Santa Fe, NM; Taos, NM; Boulder City, NV; Carson City, NV; Minden, NV; Chappaqua, NY; Fairport, NY; Penfield, NY; Staten Island, NY; Tivoli, NY; Webster, NY; Yonkers, NY; Athens, OH; Cincinnati, OH; Cleveland, OH; Defiance, OH; Fairborn, OH; Hudson; OH; Macedonia, OH; Medina, OH; Middletown, OH; Norwood, OH; Troy, OH; Wadsworth, OH; Perry, OK; Oregon City, OR; Silverton, OR; Ardmore, PA; Berwyn, PA; Bethel Park, PA; Gettysburg, PA; Harrisburg, PA; McMurray, PA; Moon Township, PA; Pottstown, PA; Reading, PA; Wayne, PA; York, PA; Greenville, SC; Rockhill, SC; Union, SC; Clarksville, TN; Franklin, TN; Germantown, TN; Murfreesboro, TN; Alvin, TX; Arlington, TX; College Station, TX; Denton, TX; Houston, TX; Kingsville, TX; Cedar City, UT; Logan, UT; Salt Lake City, UT; Vernal, UT; Blacksburg, VA; Gloucester, VA; Herndon, VA; Norfolk, VA; Roanoke, VA; Suffolk, VA; Barre, VT; Bellow Falls, VT; Burlington, VT; Hyde Park, VT; Manchester Center, VT; Newport, VT; Springfield, VT; Waitsfield, VT; Bainbridge Island, WA; Bremerton, WA; College Park, WA; Ellensburg, WA; Kent, WA; Longview, WA; Port Townsend, WA; Seattle, WA; Toppenish, WA; Dodgeville, WI; Fitchburg, WI; Hartford, WI; Janesville, WI; Lake Mills, WI; Kenosha, WI; Madison, WI; Merrill, WI; Muskego, WI; New London, WI; Reedsburg, WI; River Falls, WI; Sun Prairie, WI; Superior, WI; Waterloo, WI; Wausau, WI; Wenatchee, WI; Whitehall, WI; Wisconsin Rapids, WI; Huntington, WV; and Summersville, WV.
The show's corresponding Web site, www.sharingmiracles.com, is an interactive forum for people to relate their own personal stories of hope and survival. Every patient's battle is unique, but the collective power of shared experiences can offer great help and courage to others who are fighting for their lives.
The Partnership for Prescription Assistance (PPA) helps uninsured and financially-struggling patients access information on programs that provide prescription medicines for free or nearly free. To find out if they may qualify for help, patients should call toll-free 1-888-4PPA-NOW to speak with a trained specialist or visit www.pparx.org.
The Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) represents the country's leading pharmaceutical research and biotechnology companies, which are devoted to inventing medicines that allow patients to live longer, healthier, and more productive lives. PhRMA companies are leading the way in the search for new cures. PhRMA members alone invested an estimated $50.3 billion in 2008 in discovering and developing new medicines. Industry-wide research and investment reached a record $65.2 billion in 2008.
PhRMA Internet Address: http://www.phrma.org
For information on stories of hope and survival, visit: http://sharingmiracles.com/
For information on how innovative medicines save lives, visit: http://www.innovation.org
For information on the Partnership for Prescription Assistance, visit: http://www.pparx.org
For more information on public health emergencies, visit http://www.rxresponse.org
For information on the danger of imported drugs, visit: http://www.buysafedrugs.info
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