This website uses cookies. By continuing you are agreeing to our privacy policy.

Every 5 Minutes a Minnesota Woman is Diagnosed with Lung Cancer

(May 8, 2018) -

For more information please contact:

James Martinez
[email protected]
(312) 445-2501

In the last 40 years, lung cancer in women has increased 94 percent, and now impacts nearly 3,000 people in Minnesota. To raise awareness of the number one cancer killer, the American Lung Association in Minnesota is celebrating lung cancer survivors and also turning Minnesota turquoise during National Women’s Lung Health Week (May 6-12).

During the week, the Lung Association is celebrating local lung cancer survivors, including Rachael Malmberg and Renee Vraa.

  • Rachael Malmberg: Malmberg was just 31 when she found out she had stage 4 lung cancer. As a former collegiate hockey player and member of the USA Women’s National Team, the diagnosis came as a shock. Since the cancer had spread to the brain and lymph nodes, she was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer. In August, she had part of her right lung and lymph nodes in her chest removed and is currently on a targeted therapy.
  • Renee Vraa: Vraa’s life has been impacted by several lung diseases – her youngest son, Nathan, suffers from asthma that is brought on by respiratory illnesses, her father suffered from COPD and lung cancer, and her sister, a life-long non-smoker, was diagnosed with stage 3 lung cancer. In 2017, Vraa had a lung cancer screening and was diagnosed with multi-focal adenocarcinoma lung cancer. She is now dedicated to raising awareness about early detection and lung cancer screening.

In addition, the American Lung Association Building, MN DOT 35 W Bridge, First Bank Building St Paul and the Lowry Bridge will be illuminated in turquoise, the signature color of LUNG FORCE. During the week, there will be several events and fundraising campaigns, including:

  • LUNG FORCE Oxygen Ball: the American Lung Association in Minnesota is hosting the third annual Oxygen Ball on May 11, an event to raise awareness about lung cancer, and celebrate survivors and advancements in research. The event is held at International Market Square, and will include a cocktail hour, silent auction, plated dinner, inspirational speakers, a live band and more.
  • CVS In-Store Campaign: From May 6 - 26, CVS Pharmacy customers can make a donation of $1, $3 or more at the register to raise funds for lung cancer awareness, research and education. In addition, CVS Pharmacy will donate $1 for every pack of Extra Gum that is purchased, up to $100,000 to the Lung Association’s LUNG FORCE.

During National Women’s Lung Health Week, the American Lung Association encourages everyone to get involved by wearing turquoise, turning their social media profiles turquoise, and donating at


About the American Lung Association

The American Lung Association is the leading organization working to save lives by improving lung health and preventing lung disease, through research, education and advocacy. The work of the American Lung Association is focused on four strategic imperatives: to defeat lung cancer; to improve the air we breathe; to reduce the burden of lung disease on individuals and their families; and to eliminate tobacco use and tobacco-related diseases. For more information about the American Lung Association, a holder of the coveted 4-star rating from Charity Navigator and a Gold-Level GuideStar Member, or to support the work it does, call 1-800-LUNGUSA (1-800-586-4872) or visit:

Red button with telephone
Ask An Expert

Questions about your lung health? Need help finding healthcare? Call 1-800-LUNGUSA.

Get help
Red button of two hand prints
We need your generous support

Make a difference by delivering research, education and advocacy to those impacted by lung disease.

Button of turquoise LUNG FORCE swirl

LUNG FORCE unites women and their loved ones across the country to stand together in the fight against lung cancer.

Get involved
Join the fight for healthy lungs and healthy air.
Donate Now.