CHICAGAO (WBBM) – Cubs great Ron Santo was responsible for raising tens of millions of dollars to help find a cure for diabetes, partnering with the Illinois chapter of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation since 1974.

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The legendary Cubs third baseman and broadcaster died Friday morning from complications of liver cancer. He was 70.

Patrick Reedy, the Executive Director of the Illinois Chapter of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation says Ron Santo was the face of JDRF and the “rock” of the organization.

“He’d speak with everybody, take pictures, sign autographs for absolutely anybody who wanted to.”

Santo was diagnosed with the disease at the age of 18, eventually losing both legs. But that did not stop him from trying to find a cure, pairing with the organization and, for the past 32 years, participating in the Ron Santo Walk to Cure Diabetes.

Santo is expected to be honored at the JDRF annual dinner next Saturday.

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