From Your Local Lung Association
Hundreds join the battle against lung cancer in Arizona
Nestled right next to the Salt River 20 minutes outside of Phoenix, the Mesa Riverview Park is the perfect place to spend a Saturday. Its winding tree-lined paths are ideal for a bike ride or morning jog. On one particular fall day, it was the place where more than 1,500 people came together to show their support for those with lung disease who can't easily enjoy such activities.
The American Lung Association in Arizona held its annual LUNG FORCE Walk on November 14, 2015, at the Mesa Riverview Park in Mesa, Arizona. People of all ages, including some friends from the animal kingdom, came together to show their support for lung disease and lung cancer survivors, patients and caregivers while honoring those that have passed from the deadly diseases.
Participants enjoyed a beautiful morning of festivities sponsored by CVS Health, Scottsdale Bullion and Coin, Cancer Treatment Centers of America, Pima Medical Institute, SRP, 3TV, IHeartMedia and many other local partners. Walkers and cheerleaders took pictures with local mascots, danced to Zumba and enjoyed the many activities at partner booths and in the kid zone. The walk kicked off with mascots and our local LUNG FORCE Heroes as they completed the three-mile stroll around Riverview Park.
The main goals of the LUNG FORCE Walk were to show support for those affected by lung cancer and lung disease, raise awareness about the devastations of these diseases throughout the local communities and raise money to help continue fighting the battle. The walk in Mesa brought in more than $180,000 for lung cancer and lung disease research.
June B. (LUNG FORCE Hero)
My name is June and my journey with cancer has been going on for 14 years now. It all started in 2002 when I was diagnosed with Stage II Uterine Cancer. In 2007, when I should have been celebrating five years 'cancer free', I learned that the cancer had metastasized to Stage IV Lung Cancer. The next seven years were a battle that included two six-month rounds of chemotherapy and two rounds of Cyberknife treatment sessions, and then I finally went into remission. However, in September 2015 during a routine follow up scan, I discovered that the tumor had latched on to my ribs and the cancer had returned.
What followed was a very aggressive course of chemotherapy and radiation treatments. My attitude from the first day I heard the words "you have cancer" has always been to beat it, not let it beat me. I was extremely fortunate in having an amazing oncologist, a very supportive husband and a group of friends and coworkers who lifted my spirits every day.
In December 2015 my family came to visit for the holidays and attended one of my appointments. I had scans done a few days before and the results showed that the cancer had disappeared! My treatments stopped immediately, but I'm still being closely monitored. I had my own special Christmas miracle.
I advocate that when facing something like this you must be strong and determined to fight. You need a doctor that you trust and, no matter what, you cannot give in. You also need a strong support system of family, friends, co-workers and organizations such as the American Lung Association that are always there and fighting to make things better.