OCEAN SPRINGS, MS (WLOX) –

11-year old Noah Barnes is faced with a daily struggle.

“Diabetes affects me in pretty much all of my daily routines,” Barnes said. “I wake up test myself, and then usually I have a full bladder. So, I really have to go to the bathroom.”

Noah wanted to help in the effort in preventing and finding a cure for diabetes which gave him an idea for his family.

“I asked them don’t you want them to be cured, and that kind of stuck with them,” said Barnes.

The idea was to walk across America.

“It was a crazy idea,” said Noah’s mother Joanne Barnes.

After convincing his Dad, his Mom got on board and Noah’s family of five sold their house, cashed in their savings, and struck out across America.

Noah and his Dad walked the entire way. His mom helped coordinate along the trip.

“We’ve gotten to talk about diabetes, talk about the stigma of diabetes, and just really bringing it to light that this is something that a lot of people and children live with,” Joanne Barnes said.

The journey from Key West, FL to Washington took eleven months, and the family finished the trip in December.

Now Noah’s dad is riding his bike back to Key West.

On Wednesday the family took a break from their trip to stop at the Diabetes Center in Ocean Springs where Noah talked with Nurse Practitioner KC Arnold.

“I’ve been helping people with diabetes in this community for 20 years. And I was shocked when I read his story, and I was so thrilled to host them here,” Arnold said. “I had a chance to show them the different technologies that we do here at the Diabetes Center. There were some things he didn’t know anything about because he was so busy walking across America last year.”

Even when the journey is finished for Noah and his family and life gets back to normal, his message will continue.

“We’re this close to a cure, and we need your help,” Barnes said.

On Thursday Noah’s dad will be riding his bike along the Mississippi Gulf Coast.

You can find more information about Noah’s march here.

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