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Roxie R.

In January of 2015, at the age of 64, Rose Ann Alderete, my mother, was diagnosed with lung cancer. The cancer was found in the lining of her lungs and was detected at Stage 4. She had been experiencing pain in her back for a few weeks and went to the doctor at my urging.

Prior to that pain my mother had been sick with pneumonia. The cancer had gone undetected despite numerous test in her lung/chest area. It wasn't until her visit about the pain in her back that it was caught.

My beautiful mother celebrated her 65th birthday on August 11, 2015 and died just a few days later on August 24, 2015 just SEVEN MONTHS after detection.

It infuriates me to think there were and are still no ways to detect this horrible type of cancer early. My mother did NOT smoke nor had she ever smoked in her life! She tried chemo, she tried studies along with removal of fluid from her lungs, breathing with the help of oxygen, loss of her hair and deteriorating right before my eyes.

My beautiful mother was too damn young to die. She didn't get to enjoy her retirement from civil service, where she gave over 20 years of service. Lung cancer robbed me of my mother and my children of their grandmother.

I do what I can to share the knowledge of this awful disease through social media and through the LUNG FORCE Walk. I donated to and walked in it along with friends and family of my great mother.

I'd love to see the level of attention we give to breast cancer awareness to the fight against lung cancer.

I will never ever forget my mother and will do my part to share her story with anyone that'll listen.

First published: November 8, 2016

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