Local Man Strives to Break Stigmas in the Springfield Fight for Air Climb
(October 28, 2014)
Springfield, MA - In his career at AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals, Richard Bamberger experiences how lung disease affects people and their families on a daily basis. He can personally relate to the patients and families he interacts with because he has lived the experience himself. Bamberger lost his mother-in-law to Non-Small-Cell lung cancer. To raise awareness about lung disease, Bamberger is participating in the American Lung Association of the Northeast’s Fight for Air Climb in Springfield on November 8 at Monarch Place.
Bamberger said his mother-in-law Maxine Zeigler’s journey through lung cancer was difficult for his family to experience. “Smoking is the worst thing you can do, but lung cancer is not just a smoker’s disease,” he said. Bamberger is hoping to break that stigma by participating in the Fight for Air Climb and supporting the American Lung Association’s mission to improve lung health and prevent lung disease.
Fight for Air Climbs are the American Lung Association’s most unique fundraisers. Climbs take place in prominent skyscrapers, stadiums or arenas and involve walking, running or racing up hundreds of steps. Sometimes called a "vertical road race," teams and individual participants can use the event as a fitness target, as a race, or as a great way to be active and meet new friends.
Despite Zeigler’s smoking addiction, Bamberger remembers his mother-in-law staying active with his children until she had an aneurysm because of her smoking, which forced her to stop for some time. “She eventually started again. It’s very addicting and she continued smoking until her lung cancer diagnosis,” Bamberger said.
“Our Fight for Air Climbs help to raise awareness about lung disease and the funds needed for lung disease research, Jeff Seyler, President & CEO of the American Lung Association for the Northeast said. “With November being Lung Cancer Awareness Month, Richard’s climb is all the more meaningful since he is honoring his mother-in-law. The American Lung Association is so grateful to have the support of Richard and the many other climbers who will be joining him. The support of the community is what enables us to raise awareness about lung health, prevent lung disease and do even more to help families like Richard’s who have faced or are facing lung cancer.”
The first climber will take off at 9 a.m. at 1414 Main Street. The after party and awards ceremony will be held in the Sheraton Hotel; which is located inside Monarch Place. For more information contact Danielle Ferrari, event manager at SpringfieldClimb@LungNEorg
The Fight for Air Climb Springfield is sponsored by Monarch Place, WMAS 94.7, WWLP 22, AMP, CBS Sports Radio, Sheraton MVP, Telemundo, Poland Spring and Kindred.