Ryan Reed has wanted to be a race car driver since he was a little boy. His family even moved to North Carolina, the center of the auto racing universe, when he was 17, so he could pursue his dream. But not long after that, he began noticing something wrong with his health. A doctor told him he had diabetes, and that he’d never race cars again.
The news was devastating for the young man, who found another doctor and with hard work and a lot of self-monitoring, was able to compete on the track after all. He won his first race earlier this year. He’ll be driving the No. 16 Ford Mustang for Roush Fenway Racing in the NASCAR Xfinity Series at the Kansas Speedway this weekend.
Reed likes to visit and inspire diabetes patients in every city he visits, and he did so with patients at The University of Kansas Hospital’s Cray Diabetes Center. In the video, he tells what it was like when he was first diagnosed with diabetes at 17, how he found a good doctor and realized his dream wasn’t over, why he likes to visit with patients today and why his first win this year was so special.