Luke + Jedi, a documentary about 6 year old Luke Nuttall and his amazing diabetes alert dog, Jedi (I KNOW he is amazing as I sat next to him at the film premiere … he didn’t even beg for treats!), held its world premiere Sunday, 25 March 2018 in Pasadena, CA to a sell-out crowd, filled with folks in the local diabetes community, in the #WeAreNotWaiting community, friends of the first-time filmmakers (Kara Johnson and Carla Romo) and many diabetes alert dogs!  It was just a remarkable morning! 

As the story goes, Luke was diagnosed on 20 September 2011 (when his pancreas “suddenly stopped producing insulin” and was taken to Los Angeles Children’s Hospital.  “Since then he has endured over 8,000 blood glucose tests and over 4,000 shots and pump cannula insertions. Luke is hypoglycemic unaware – which means he is unable to tell when he has low blood sugar. There is no way to cure or prevent this disease. A Diabetic Alert Dog can save his life.”

Our film will focus on the bond between Luke and Jedi, as we follow Luke’s journey in living with Type 1. Through this heartwarming story, we will educate audiences on the fascinating process behind how Diabetic Alert Dogs (DADs) are trained, as well as promote Type 1 Diabetes awareness. 

I sat through the film, absolutely mesmerized … by the charm of Luke, the goofy sweetness of Jedi, the loving challenges of Luke’s mom, Dorrie through the multitude of finger sticks during soccer and throughout the night.  This is just such real life for those of us living with Type 1.  There were moments of laughter, moments of tears, often head nodding in total understanding.  My husband was deeply moved by the whole experience.  He said, “this film is so beautifully filmed and edited, and the story so very real.  I know we live with this but to watch another family makes it just more real and more heart-wrenching!”  There was also a very clear analysis of the pros and cons of diabetes alert dogs vs. CGM devices.

And my personal experience with Jedi?!?!?  I was in a meeting later that afternoon with several folks from the Looped community … and Jedi was lounging nearby.  He got up and walked over to me, sniffed around, stared at me … and then ALERTED ME!!!  YES!  He does a “down dog” for a low or dropping BG.  My BG was coming down from the high after lunch (must have had some hidden sugar in the veggies!) … and my CGM read 160, down from 200.  Within the next 15 minutes, my BG actually dropped to 100!  Jedi had let me know about 30 minutes before my CGM alarmed.  And he watched me intently while I tested.  Wow!

Along with some photos, I’ve included the documentary teaser below.  The filmmakers are hoping to book showings across the country and entries into film festivals, ultimately to be available on Amazon.  I truly hope you all get to see this film!!!

For more info:  www.savingluke.com (which takes you to the Facebook page) or visit www.lukeandjedi.com.

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