BENEFITING: LUNGEVITY FOUNDATION
EVENT DATE: Oct 13, 2012
Mileage Tracker: 26
In a few days, I will be running the Hartford Marathon, my sixth marathon! I have said that my last marathon would be my last… but I just knew I couldn’t say no to running my now local marathon. What better way to do it than to run it for a good cause!
Unless you attended my wedding back in April, you’re probably unaware of some of my personal stories I’m about to share with you.
In early 2008, I lost a close friend to lung cancer. She was a company gym instructor (and you know me! I frequent the company gym!) so we quickly became good friends. The kind of friend I easily convinced to buy an apartment in my building because it’s close to work and so we can go out dancing all of the time. It came as a shock to me when she told me she was diagnosed with lung cancer. She was young, healthy, fit, vegan, never-smoker and had no family history of lung cancer. So how could she have gotten lung cancer? Within a few months, she passed at a young age of 26.
My best friend of 16 years, my maid of honor at my wedding, Belinda, was diagnosed with Stage IV lung cancer last November. Also a young, super duper fit, healthy, never-smoker, with no family history of lung cancer. The cancer sort of snuck up on her; it went undetected for months. When it was detected, she was told she would need chemo for the rest of her life. Why are more and more young, non-smoking, healthy people falling victim to lung cancer? Is it the food we eat, the air we breathe, is it in our genes?
Right now, CDC reports that the highest number of cancer deaths occur annually as a result of lung cancer. Statistics show that in 2012, there will be 226,160 new cases for lung cancer, of which 160,340 result in death. That’s 70% whereas breast cancer is only 17%. Breast cancer has a 85% survival rate after 5 years whereas lung cancer only has 5%. Breast cancer gets more attention from the public whereas lung cancer doesn’t because it has a stigma that only smokers get it. 10-15% of lung cancers occur in non-smokers.
Belinda has always been a true inspiration to me. More so now. Even through these toughest of times, she's always smiling. She remains optimistic and strong. She is actively working with an organization called Lungevity to help spread awareness for lung cancer, especially among Asian women. (Here is their official website: http://events.lungevity.org). They are raising funds for lung cancer research.
A week after running 42k, I will be walking 3k with Belinda and her team of family, friends and supporters on October 21st, a Breathe Deep NYC event.
So in a nutshell, I just wanted to share with you my upcoming enduring and less enduring events in honor of Belinda. My main goal with this email is that I reach out to you to raise awareness for lung cancer. If you do have some spare change in your pockets, please consider helping me help my best friend to raise money for lung cancer research. The link to my fundraising site is here:
Make every breath count.
LIVE, LAUGH, RUN!