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LUNG FORCE Heroes

Tracy F.

Jerry Fischer: My dad, my hero! Born in small-town Nebraska in 1941, my father began smoking cigarettes when he was a young adult. Our family photo albums are full of pictures showing my dad holding a cigarette or an ashtray strategically placed on the kitchen table nearby. Little did he know that his pack-a-day smoking habit would change the course of his life.

In his early 50s, my dad miraculously quit smoking cold-turkey. He said he was tired of feeling bad. He lived simply – prioritizing faith, family and work. He was kind and generous to those who crossed his path. He was a larger-than-life personality with big dreams and ideas. He loved his family. He loved being a Fischer. His loud voice, a Fischer trait, would bellow with laughter and he always loved a good joke.

In 2012, my dad was diagnosed with Stage 4 Lung Cancer. The years following included numerous rounds of chemo and radiation. He lived with cancer like a champ for six years, but fell very ill in December of 2017 and passed away on February 24, 2018. This horrible disease stole precious years from my father's life and he is missed each and every day by his children and grandchildren.

First published: November 20, 2019

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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.

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