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Dear Team Bret,

What an awesome night in so many ways! We saw Bret Michaels Band perform
at Ribfest in Mankato, MN on a gorgeous summer night (her first time), I
got to spend one last moment with my daughter who leaves soon for two
weeks at Camp Needlepoint and then to UWRF as a college freshman, I got to
see Bret in concert for the 9th time, AND my daughter got to meet Bret!

Bret was the one who sent her to Camp Needlepoint in the first place –
three years ago! Since then, she has spent many hours training to be a
full counselor to others with Type 1 Diabetes. This year she will spend
two weeks connecting, teaching, having fun and mentoring other kids.

Thank you Bret (and team, all of whom have been helpful, fun, real and
accessible) for Paying It Forward for my daughter. You changed her life!
And now she is Paying It Forward! This is what matters!

Oh, and she LOVED your concert – it was her first time seeing you! I have
seen you numerous times and it never gets old – only better!


All our Love,
Julie and Hailey 


Do you have a story of giving back, supporting charities, overcoming obstacles, a story of strength, inspiration through music to battle through setbacks or illness? We’d like to hear and share your story and photos.

Simply visit, read other great stories and submit your own!

Also if you have the means and would like to, please consider donating to the Bret Michaels Life Rocks Foundation by clicking HERE. To the many who have donated, we thank you all very much!

20131014-201026.jpg / Life Rocks Foundation: Jesse’s Story / Life Rocks Foundation: Jesse’s Story

My 9 year old son, Jesse, was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes on Wednesday. He has always been a very healthy boy so this has really caught him, and us, a bit by surprise. My husband was diagnosed with Type 1 when he was 11 years old, but having a child of my own with it is not the same. The entire medical team at Children’s Medical Center in Dallas, from the ER check in clerk to the Endocrinologist Team we were assigned were wonderful! They took us through a huge amount of educational and nutritional training and got Jesse out of the hospital and sleeping at home within 36 hours from the time we walked into the ER. We are so information rich right now we’re dizzy.

Thank you for all you do to bring awareness to the world about this non-discriminating disease. It is great to have someone like you who is not afraid to share your experiences in order to help others.

Cate Carroll

Jesse's 9th Birthday, May 10, 2013 / Life Rocks Foundation – Tricia’s Story / Life Rocks Foundation – Tricia’s Story

My name is Tricia. I have been a fan of Bret Michaels since he started. In March of 2000 I was diagnosed with type 2 Diabetes. I was having a difficult time coming to terms with everything. In June of 2000 I was lucky enough to meet Bret backstage in Toronto,ON Canada. We got to talking about Diabetes and I told him that I had just recently been diagnosed. He had so many encouraging things to say and told me he would make a deal with me, every time he came to town he wanted to check up with me to see how things were going. Bret is truly an inspiration and a wonderful human! Thank you again for everything you have done for me, and the things you do for everyone.

Tricia Cumming

Bret and I 2012 Hamilton ON / Life Rocks Foundation Story: Tess Attends Diabetes Camp, Becomes Role Model To Others / Life Rocks Foundation Story: Tess Attends Diabetes Camp, Becomes Role Model To Others

Tess Anderson was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes Labor Day 2008 at 8 years old. That didn’t break her spirit though. Instead she has been inspired to encourage others who also have diabetes. Diabetes doesn’t have to stop you from dreaming big as long as you take care of yourself first.

Tess is a cyclist, and just completed a 35 mile Tour de Cure ride for her local ADA.

Her, Team Tess has been a leading fundraiser for the 4 years since her diagnosis.
She was also the Northern Illinois Youth Ambassador for the ADA in 2011. Speaking at
many events. This spring she attended Call to Congress on Capitol Hill in March,
speaking as a Youth Action Council representative to legislators about issues
concerning those with diabetes.

When she is not racing Cyclocross , she is playing soccer or basketball. She is a force in motion. One of Tess’s favorite times of year is camp. This year, thanks to the Life Rocks Foundation and Bret Michaels, she will attend Camp Triangle D in July.
Camp is the one place where everyone is alike. The friendships she has made have
been her support system all year. Texting and calling on friends, in good and bad D
days. This year Tess has chosen to be an inspiration to the younger kids as a CIT at
a diabetes day camp as well. Coming full circle.

Thank you Bret!

2013-03-07 11.14.55

Tess and mom, Anne Marie at the Capitol

2013-06-09 13.44.04

Here is a pic of Tess and one of the little guys attending the day camp she will be a counselor in training. She is already his hero!


Picture of Tess at CXNationals Rocks Foundation Featured Story Rocks Foundation Featured Story

Life has blessed me with a wonderful family. My wife Starr has been my
rock for over 20 years now. We’ve been through some difficult times over the years
but she’s never given up on me. We have 4 incredible kids, Orion is 14 and starting
High School next year, they grow up fast. Caelum is our special boy. He 12 and was
diagnosed with Autism at age 5. He’s a great kid but has had many challenges in his
short life and has many more to follow. He’s currently in a clinical education
environment in Mechanicsburg, PA that he has thrived in. Phoenix, our youngest boy,
is wise beyond his years. He know just when to go give you a hug and tell you he
loves you and make everything go into perspective. Our little princess Lyra is a
fireball. She was born on the same day of the year as Phoenix, August 26, and has so
many of his traits. My wife’s mom, Sa, lives with us. She requires dialysis 5 days
a week due to complications from heart issues and diabetes. My wife being the
giving person she recieved training to due this in our home so her mother would be
more comfortable. She spends an average of 4 hours, 5 days a week dedicated to
taking care of her mothers medical needs. I’m Chris and I also suffer from
diabetes but haven’t had the complications of my mom in law. We have lived in
Carlisle, PA for about 6 year now. We are an average family and our lives revolve
our kids. Finances don’t allow for alot of things I would like to provide for my
family. The one source of entertainment that we have focused on is RVing. We
purchased a fixer upper travel trailer that is a work in progress. We head out to
campgrounds around PA as often as we can. It gives us all an escape into nature
that feeds the soul. We’re limited to a couple days due to the dialysis treatment
but make the best of it. The message I would like to convey to all is always focus
on family and make the best of the situation you have been dealt.

– Chris Smart

Smart Family

Antonio is “Choosing to be Part of the Solution”

Antonio is “Choosing to be Part of the Solution”

Antonio’s story from June of 2012 ~

My Diabetes Story


In November, I was diagnosed with full blown Type 2 diabetes. For those of you who don’t know what that is, it means my body does not know how to use the sugar that it body needs to run properly. I guess I should have known to be careful with my health. My dad has diabetes. That doesn’t mean I was guaranteed to get it, but my chances were better than average.

Anyhow, my doctor told me my diabetes was full blown, meaning I depend on regular insulin shots, take meds twice a day, watch my diet carefully, and exercise daily. Now these are all things I should have been doing regularly, but just didn’t. Why not, you ask? That is an excellent question. I guess I felt like there would always be time in the future.That future is now.

Having diabetes isn’t a curse. It does mean I have to be careful with myself. I have to limit the amount of sugar I eat. I need to exercise daily for 30 minutes. I have to check my blood sugars at least twice a day. I have to take insulin, the stuff your body uses to make sugar do its job, once a day. But I am healthier for it. I am losing weight. I have gone from being morbidly obese (more than 100 pounds over my ideal weight) to overweight. But that is getting better. My blood sugars are stabilized. My health is returning. As I continue to improve my health, I may eventually be able to stop taking meds and insulin. Will I be cured? No. There is no cure for diabetes – yet.

So what can happen if I ignore my diabetes? I could develop glaucoma and lose my eyesight. I could have heart problems brought on by diabetes. I could develop infections that might end in loss of life or limb. I could not live to see my children grow old. None of those options sound appealing to me.

Many people live with diabetes (up to three years before it symptoms show up in some cases). Many more people each day are diagnosed. But not much is being done in the public sector to raise the alarm. It is becoming a silent epidemic. In fact, according to American Diabetes Associated, more people die of diabetes and related complications than die of breast cancer and AIDS combined. To that end, I choose not to stay silent. I am choosing to be part of the solution. / Life Rocks Foundation Featured Story! / Life Rocks Foundation Featured Story!

My 13yr old son was diagnosed with T1D on 4/21/12. As you know, our lives
have been turned upside down. A fellow T1 mom and I have just filed a
petition to revise the names of both Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes to more
accurately reflect the nature of each disease. We tried to do this in a way
that benefits both the T1 and T2 communities. We sincerely hope that we have
accomplished our goal to make this petition benefit all of us. We are very
excited to share that Dr. Camillo Ricordi of the DRI has signed our petition
and is promoting it on his FB page! We are 48hrs into this and have 400 signatures.
We just might be on the way to making change happen!

Our hope is to bring positive change into the lives of the over 3 million children
and adutls living with T1D.

– Jamie Perez

image featured story of the day. featured story of the day.

My name is Summer. I am 6 years old and on Feb 4, 2013 I found out that I
had Type 1 diabetes and hypothyroidism. I think that is the same age as Bret when he
found out. My Grandpa has had Type 1 for the last 25 years so myself and my mom were very familiar with diabetes. (My mom says thats why I was so brave in the hospital.)

The doctors told my family that I had it only 3 weeks before I was admitted.
Luckly my mom knew the signs. I was complaining of a headache, drinking a ton of
water, going to the bathroom more than normal, and was very irratable. The doctors
told my mom that most kids enter the hospital with diabetes in a coma, but because
of her knowledge I am truly grateful that she caught it that early. I am writing
this to let people know that there are signs to watch out for and it could save
someones life. Maybe in my lifetime there will be a cure and I could be a normal
healthy kid again.



Sophia’s Story: An Inspiration Within

Sophia’s Story: An Inspiration Within

Dear Bret,

First of all, THANK YOU SO MUCH for sending me to camp!! My mom was so excited to tell me she had met you and that you offered to send me to camp. I couldn’t believe it. I had just been diagnosed for six months when she met you, so it was very emotional for us. Thank you so much. I just got back a couple days ago. The day I got back I got to go to your concert in Elko, MN. You were so exciting to watch!!! And it was even more fun to meet you and I’m glad we got to talk for a few minutes. I felt pretty lucky for once! As you know diabetes is a big responsibility. You have to grow up pretty quick. I’m glad there is a camp for kids with diabetes. It’s the one time I don’t feel like I have diabetes. Nobody has to wait for me to count my carbs or check my sugar or give myself insulin. Because we are all doing it. I was suppose to rock climb at camp, but I broke my fingers right before camp in a motocross race crash. So I did the Wranglers and it was fun! Thanks for signing my cast. I am saving it now!

I was diagnosed when I was 12 years old. I was real sick after having the H1N1 flu virus. The doctors tell me that is what caused my diabetes. I am very active with dance, acting, singing, gymnastics & motocross. I also stay on the honor roll in school. So when I was sick, it was hard to even get up. We didn’t know what was wrong with me and I pretty much couldn’t do anything. The doctors couldn’t figure it out. I was so sick of going to doctors and getting different medicine and different diagnosis. I was just beat. Finally I ended up in the hospital after just being so sick I couldn’t take it anymore. After a few days they figured it out. I didn’t know if I was gonna die or what. I asked the doctor if I was gonna die, and he said no. Then I asked if I could still dance, and he said yes. I think we were in shock for a while. My mom didn’t sleep at all – she still never sleeps cause she has to check on me all night. It’s a lot of work. After a week or two I started feeling better. It wasn’t long before I was back in all my activities. I just have to be careful and take the time to take care of myself. It’s really hard to be a kid and have to manage a disease. But I am learning.

You have inspired me to give back as well. At camp you can learn how to be a counselor and I’m going to do just that! Since you offered to send me to camp again next year, I’m excited to keep going and one day be a camp counselor myself! My family raises money for a cure! I gave you one of the wrist bands they sell to raise money. Maybe in our lifetime we will find a cure!!!

Thank you so much Bret. You and the people you work with are great. My mom is also SO thankful to you and everyone who helps you make dreams come true!

Love, Health & Happiness to you and your family and team!

Sophia Johnson


Bret is truly an inspiration and a wonderful human!

Bret is truly an inspiration and a wonderful human!

My name is Tricia. I have been a fan of Bret Michaels and Poison since they started. In March of 2000 I was diagnosed with type 2 Diabetes. I was having a difficult time coming to terms with everything. In June of 2000 I was lucky enough to meet Bret backstage in Toronto,ON Canada. We got to talking about Diabetes and I told him that I had just recently been diagnosed. He had so many encouraging things to say and told me he would make a deal with me, every time he came to town he wanted to meet and check up with me to see how things were going. And that he wanted me to email him every couple months and let him know how things were going. He kept his word and responded to all my emails and still to this year 2012 I still get to meet him backstage when he comes to town. Bret is truly an inspiration and a wonderful human! Thank you again for everything you have done for me, and the things you do for everyone.