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Isobel Murray - Obituary

Isobel Murray on Update front cover

We’re deeply saddened to learn of the death of Isobel Murray on 22 May 2021 at her home in Ayr.

Isobel was the first person in Scotland to volunteer to join the ground-breaking Diabetes Remission Clinical Trial (DiRECT). DiRECT is funded by us and is run jointly by the University of Glasgow and the University of Newcastle.

Isobel had been unwell in the years prior to starting the trial almost seven years ago, having previously had heart attacks. She was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes in 2011.

Highly motivated to follow the DiRECT diet programme, Isobel lost over 25kg (4st) in weight. With that, her diabetes went into remission. With this achieved, Isobel declared, "I have got my life back.

Her story inspired others seeking a route to remission from type 2 diabetes and Isobel soon became a keen supporter of efforts at a national level to make type 2 diabetes remission programmes accessible to more people. She appeared regularly at our professional and public events, and on TV and radio. She quickly became the public face of the DiRECT trial and of diabetes remission.

She was a kind, thoughtful and positive person who provided hope to huge numbers of people with type 2 diabetes, and their families. Isobel was a caring wife to Jim, mother and grandmother, and had retired from a career as a manager in the civil service.

Her beaming smile was the cover photo for the Winter 2020 issue of Update, which featured her in a three-page cover-story about DiRECT.

Her own words about her remission speak volumes.

"When I was first told that my diabetes went into remission, I felt absolutely ecstatic! Six years later, that feeling is still with me. Over the last few years I have been able to lead a normal life again. It took only a few months to do the plan and to get my life back – it was worth every minute. I feel 10 years younger now”.

We’re all indebted to Isobel for participating in DiRECT and for everything she did to promote successful type 2 diabetes remission programmes.

We’re so grateful to have spent time in her company over the course of the study and beyond.

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