Arkansas Lung Cancer Survivor Travels to Washington, D.C. to Ask Congress for Increased Research Funding

Shelley Myran will join volunteers from across the nation to ask members of Congress to take action against lung cancer
Springdale resident and lung cancer survivor, Shelley Myran, is in Washington, D.C. today to meet with her members of Congress during the American Lung Association’s LUNG FORCE Advocacy Day on March 29. As a part of the nationwide event, Myran will join more than 40 other people across the country who have been impacted by lung cancer to ask lawmakers to support $51 billion in research funding for the National Institutes of Health (NIH), $11.6 billion in funding for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and to support and protect Medicaid.

“When I went to the doctor with pain in my lower right side, I never expected to find out that I had lung cancer,” shares Myran.  Myran has never been a smoker, nor has a history of lung cancer in her family. “This health experience has taught me that there is a lack of education on the signs and symptoms of lung cancer. LUNG FORCE Advocacy Day is an opportunity for our state leaders to hear from ‘real’ people like me living with lung cancer about the impact significant dollars will have on early detection, diagnosis, and critical research to further advance treatments,” remarks Myran.

“There is one thing I have learned since my lung cancer diagnosis at the age of 40 and that is that all you need for lung cancer is lungs, and we all have those. This experience has taught me that there is a lack of education on the signs and symptoms of lung cancer. It is shrouded in a stigma that only smokers get lung cancer, and this is just not true. I have met so many people since being diagnosed that were not smokers yet still have lung cancer. Whether we are a smoker or not, this disease will not discriminate.”

During Advocacy Day, Myran will speak with Senator John Boozman, Senator Tom Cotton and Congressman Steve Womack to share her personal experience with lung cancer and explain why investments in public health, research funding and quality and affordable healthcare are important to her.

The American Lung Association launched LUNG FORCE Advocacy Day in 2016 to ask members of Congress to support robust, sustainable and predictable federal funding increases for lung cancer research, prevention and quality and affordable healthcare. As a part of Advocacy Day, LUNG FORCE Heroes have succeeded in helping increase NIH lung cancer research funding by over 115%. Since 2016, more than 50 new therapies have been approved by the FDA to treat lung cancer - giving more hope to those impacted by this disease. In 2022, Heroes successfully urged Congress to extend funding for tax credits so more than three million Americans were able to keep affordable healthcare coverage through the federal and state marketplaces.

Myran encourages others in Arkansas to advocate for lung cancer research and healthcare protections by contacting their members of Congress, which they can do at Learn more about Myran’s story and the LUNG FORCE initiative at
For more information, contact:

Jill Smith
[email protected]

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