Daughter Looks to Remember Mother at the Lung Association’s LUNG FORCE Walk: Boston Presented by Lahey Health | American Lung Association

Daughter Looks to Remember Mother at the Lung Association’s LUNG FORCE Walk: Boston Presented by Lahey Health

(June 9, 2015)

For Julia Gaynor, the LUNG FORCE Walk presented by Lahey Health is a means for her to continue to heal from her mother’s passing from lung cancer. Gaynor, of Charlestown, will participate in the walk at the Boston Common on Thursday, May 14 along with 25 other members of “Team Kristine.” Gaynor hopes by participating in the national LUNG FORCE campaign, she will inspire other people and raise awareness about the disease. 

Gaynor’s mother, Kristine Matson, died from lung cancer when she was 58. Matson only lived for three months after her diagnosis. “When I experienced how devastating it was and how quickly it took my mom’s life, I wanted to get involved and help other people in the same situation,” Gaynor said.  For Julia, it was important to educate others about the importance of early detection screening, because she felt it might have helped her mom had it been provided for her. 

The American Lung Association’s LUNG FORCE Walk: Boston is nationally presented by CVS Health and locally presented by Lahey Health, Lilly Oncology,Boehringer Ingelheim, Medtronic, PerkinElmer, Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center, Genentech, Magic 106.7  and Poland Spring are also generous sponsors.

Julia began looking for marathons to participate in which led her to the LUNG FORCE Walk. “LUNG FORCE has the right message; it’s such a powerful campaign. When I saw it I knew I wanted to be a part of that movement.” 

Lung cancer is the #1 cancer killer of women, killing almost twice as many women as any other cancer. In fact, statistics show that fewer than half of all women diagnosed with lung cancer survive one year after diagnosis. Anyone can get lung cancer - including women who don’t currently smoke or who have successfully quit smoking.  Yet, according to new research from the American Lung Association’s Women’s Lung Health Barometer, only 1 percent of women identify lung cancer as a cancer that is top-of-mind for them.

“The Lung Association is honored to have Julia participating in our first LUNG FORCE Walk in Boston,” said Jeff Seyler CEO & President of the American Lung Association of the Northeast. “Our LUNG FORCE campaign is working to spread awareness about the importance of preventing lung cancer, especially in women. The statistics prove that this disease is something that needs to be addressed immediately. With the help of  Julia and the many others who’ve been touched by lung cancer, I am confident we will be successful in fighting this disease.”

Gaynor hopes the LUNG FORCE Walk will be a sense of hope for those who are in a similar situation as her mom, Kristine. “There wasn’t a cure for my mother eight years ago, hopefully someday there will be one for someone just like her; that way another daughter doesn’t have to be without her mother.”

Registration for the LUNG FORCE Walk will begin at 5 p.m. on May 14th.  To find out more about the walk or to register visit http://action.lung.org/Boston. Other walks will be held in New York City and Warwick, Rhode Island and Burlington, Vermont. 


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