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

LUNG FORCE
 
  • Share this page:

LUNG FORCE Heroes

Mindi N.

My journey began when I was born 2 weeks late at only 4.5lbs due to the fact that my mother continued smoking almost a pack of cigarettes the entire time she was pregnant with me. My parents both smoked in the house & in the car until I was about 8 years old, so I spent much of my youngest years sick, suffering from asthma & doing breathing treatments until we finally moved into a house that had never had a smoker inside.

During those same years, my dad had been working in an industry that required him to do welding inside of a warehouse, which we would later discover in his life was an older warehouse full of asbestos. I used to love playing hide n seek, and would hide in the closet where he kept his dirty uniforms bc I could place them on top of me & never be found...not ever knowing the danger that was hiding in those clothes.

Sadly, when I was 31, my dad was diagnosed with a very aggressive form of lung cancer with at the age of 66. He had been a heavy smoker since he was in the the 3rd grade & because of that, his chances of developing cancer increased tenfold, while his chances of surviving went down to a very small percentage. He was originally treated & found to be cancer free with 2 rounds of chemo for the initial diagnosis of small cell carcinoma, only to find out 6 weeks later during his Petscan that his body was full of tumors ...as the doctor said, his brain was “lit up like a firecracker.” He attempted radiation & chemo, but sadly his body never responded to the treatments & we ended up losing him within one month of the stage 4 diagnosis, which we later discovered had been Mesothelioma. It was the absolute hardest, most heartbreaking thing I’ve ever witnessed or had to go thru in my life.

My dad was the kindest, most loving man I’ve ever known & he selflessly made the decision before he entered Hospice to donate his body to medical research in hopes that more information could be gathered to help a cure be found. The scary reality is, even though I’ve never once smoked a cigarette in my life, I’m very aware that my exposure to so much 2nd & 3rd hand smoke throughout my life has greatly increased my chances of developing lung cancer at some point later in my life. My biggest hope is that we will be able to find a cure so that no person or family ever has to suffer thru the nightmare of lung cancer again.

First published: April 2, 2019

  Share this story:
 
Tell your story View all stories Donate

American Lung Association is solely responsible for content.

Hero stories are the point of view of the Hero and not necessarily the American Lung Association. The Lung Association does not endorse any specific provider, facility or treatment.

About LUNG FORCE

Donate to LUNG FORCE

Get Involved

LUNG FORCE Heroes

Events Near Me

Lung Health Barometer

Media

Sponsors & Supporters

Shop LUNG FORCE

Sign up for updates

Get the latest news and information on the fight against lung cancer and for lung health.

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
What is LUNG FORCE?

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.