WXXI Employee to Climb 400 Steps to Remember Father who Died of Lung Cancer
Jen Sally participates in the Fight for Air Climb to help the American Lung Association raise awareness and funding for lung disease
(September 30, 2015) -
As Jen Sally anticipates taking her first of 400 steps in the Fight for Air Climb, she knows her father, John Sally, would be proudly supporting her. Jen is participating in the American Lung Association’s Fight for Air Climb in honor of her father who died from Stage IV lung cancer this past May. The Fight for Air Climb will take place on Saturday, October 17 at Legacy Tower, One Bausch & Lomb Place.
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.
Jen is hoping her participation in the Fight for Air Climb will raise awareness about the need for CT-scans. “I think if our family had the conversation about screening sooner, the outcome for my dad might have been different. We missed a window of opportunity,” Sally said. Now, Jen wants to help other families with similar circumstances. “I don’t want other families to experience what mine did, I want to change the trajectory for them,” Sally said.
“The Lung Association is honored to have Jen participating with us for the first time at our Fight for Air Climb in Rochester,” said Jeff Seyler, President & CEO of the American Lung Association of the Northeast. “It is families like Jen’s that show what our mission of improving lung health and preventing lung disease is all about. We look forward to working with Jen to promote the importance of early detection screening at the climb and in the future.”
John Sally lived a full, loud and vibrant life and Jen is confident her dad would appreciate her remembering him as she makes her way up 20 floors. “He probably would think I was crazy for climbing all those stairs, but I know he would be so proud of what I’m doing. He was a very passionate individual,” Sally said. She also wants to use the Fight for Air Climb to break the stereotype of lung cancer. “I want people to know that this isn’t just a smoker’s disease and change the thought that those who do smoke deserve it. I think my dad felt that way when he was diagnosed and I don’t want others to feel the same,” Sally said.
Registration for the Fight for Air Climb begins at 7:30 a.m. and the first climber will take off at 9 a.m. The Fight for Air Climb is proudly sponsored by 98.9 The Buzz, Fox Rochester, 13 Wham TV & The CW Rochester, Excellus BlueCross BlueShield, Harter Secrest & Emery LLP, County of Monroe Fire Bureau, MedVed Running and Walking Outfitters. The climb is nationally sponsored by Kindred Healthcare and Who Pneu?, an American Lung Association campaign in partnership with Pfizer To find out more or to register for the event go to www.fightforairclimb.org.