November is Lung Cancer Awareness Month

by Alli

Did you know that November is Lung Cancer Awareness Month? I didn’t until I was recently contacted by the beautiful Heather Von St. James.  She’s approaching her 10-year cancer-free anniversary after having her left lung removed due to a preventable disease called mesothelioma

Love Your Lungs

When Heather was a little girl, her dad worked in drywall construction.  She inhaled the asbestos when her dad would grab her up for a big hug when he came home from work.  Her dad had no idea that asbestos was clinging to his work jacket.

The day Heather was diagnosed with malignant pleural mesothelioma, she was given 15 months to live if she chose to do nothing.  Her baby was only three months old and she had been married for six and a half years.

If you have a few minutes, I encourage you to click here to read Heather’s story of her courageous fight against lung cancer.  I can’t do it justice like she can.

Basically, the only thing I’ve ever really known about mesothelioma is that commercial on TV where an older man says, “Hi, I’m Doug and I have mesothelioma.”  I, however, was heartbroken when I watched one of my favorite aunts die from lung cancer.

Facts About Lung Cancer

After reading Heather’s story, I was extremely upset to find out that asbestos has not been banned in the U.S. or Canada and it’s the only known cause of mesothelioma.

Healthy Lung Facts:

  • Approximately 1.5 Billion people are breathing in dangerous levels of pollution each day.
  • Respiratory illnesses such as lung cancer, asthma, and COPD can be genetic.

Mesothelioma Facts:

  • Mesothelioma is an aggressive cancer that most commonly attacks the lining of the lungs.
  • Mesothelioma is caused by exposure to asbestos, a carcinogen used in many consumer construction products. Asbestos is NOT yet banned in the U.S. or Canada. (It is banned in 60 other countries worldwide)
  • Exposure to asbestos can also cause asbestosis, a disease that causes shortness of breath, coughing, and scarring of lungs.

In Heather’s Own Words:

“I was a salon owner and hairdresser, and with the loss of my lung, I also lost the stamina it takes to stand behind the chair for 8 hours a day. All of that, gone when I was told I had mesothelioma.

Where is the justice for the countless victims that have died from being exposed to asbestos? For their families? Why are we still fighting for a ban all these years later when we know, without a doubt, the only known cause of mesothelioma is asbestos?

This is why I fight for a ban, why I go to Washington with The Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization and The Environmental Working Group. My voice as a victim of asbestos is a strong one, and people listen. We won’t stop until we know Washington is listening. Mesothelioma may not be curable, but it is preventable. We will continue to educate, to inform, and to fight until there is a ban.”

It’s so important to love your lungs and keep them healthy!

Love Your Lungs & Keep Them Healthy

Thanks, Heather, for allowing me to share your story.  I’ve learned so much just by reading your incredible journey.  Prayers from me to you and yours and Happy 10-Year Cancer-Free Anniversary!

If you’d like to follow Heather’s story, she’s on Facebook, Twitter and g+.

November is Lung Cancer Awareness Month

23 comments

Jenn @ EngineerMommy November 11, 2015 - 8:19 am

When we were looking at houses to purchase, one of them had asbestos in the attic and we had a REMARKABLY difficult time getting out of that deal. Apparently, the fact that asbestos was present was NOT reason enough to get out of the deal. Asbestos should definitely be banned! Thanks for sharing this important message!

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Franc Ramon November 11, 2015 - 9:27 am

Awareness is the first step of prevention, which is the best cure. It’s really nice to share more info about Lung Cancer for avoidance, detection and cure.

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Shell November 11, 2015 - 12:43 pm

She’s such an inspiration to others. I just have to say that her hair is FANTASTIC! Thank you for spreading awareness!

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Megan Elford November 11, 2015 - 2:30 pm

What an inspiring story! I didn’t realize that asbestos hasn’t yet been outlawed in Canada and the States. It’s crazy, I hope they do it soon!

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Lisa November 11, 2015 - 5:47 pm

What a great campaign. It makes you wonder how many other things we use that are bad for us.

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Vera Sweeney November 11, 2015 - 5:50 pm

I didn’t realize that November is lung cancer awareness month. What an inspiring story to share!

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Angelic Sinova November 11, 2015 - 9:49 pm

I had no idea that November is Lung Cancer Awareness Month. Heather’s story is so inspirational. Thanks for sharing <3

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aaronica (the crunchy mommy) November 11, 2015 - 10:16 pm

her story was amazing… thank you so much for sharing and increasing our awareness past the commercials that i too remember

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wendy November 11, 2015 - 10:55 pm

I lost an Aunt to lung cancer and my Dad to throat cancer last month. It seems I’ve lost someone to almost every cancer there is.

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Rosey November 12, 2015 - 6:17 am

It’s important to be aware. I’m glad attention is being directed toward these things now in such large numbers. I think the internet helps a lot!

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Terri Ramsey Beavers November 12, 2015 - 6:22 am

Such a great story and awareness for this cause. I didn’t know that November is lung cancer awareness month but I’m glad to know it is.

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Shobha George November 12, 2015 - 7:18 am

Thank you for sharing awareness of this disease! My grandmother had lung cancer (and beat it)! It’s a tough disease, awareness is key!

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Alli November 14, 2015 - 5:35 am

So happy to hear that your grandmother beat lung cancer!!

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Rebecca Swenor November 12, 2015 - 3:27 pm

This is a great cause indeed. My dad right now has been living with Mesothelioma and COPD for three years. He worked in the mines for over 30 yrs and he was a smoker. Thanks for sharing the awareness.

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Alli November 14, 2015 - 5:32 am

I didn’t know that much about Mesothelioma until I did some research before writing about Heather. I was appalled that the US and Canda have not banned asbestos. Prayers for your dad!

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michele d November 12, 2015 - 5:01 pm

Thank you for sharing about Heather’s Story. I wish her and her family blessings.

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Stephanie of The TipToe Fairy November 12, 2015 - 7:24 pm

Thank you for sharing Heather’s story. This is such a preventable thing. I don’t know why they don’t ban asbestos.

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Wildish Jess November 13, 2015 - 12:08 am

I didn’t even know there was a lung cancer awareness month! The thought of having one of my lungs removed gives me anxiety. I hope her surgery goes well!

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Alli November 14, 2015 - 5:26 am

She actually had the surgery 10 years ago and that’s why she is cancer free now. Her story is so inspiring and I learned so much about mesothelioma when I was researching this article. It would give me anxiety as well.

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lisa @bitesforbabies November 13, 2015 - 7:00 am

Thank you for sharing your story! My uncle died of lung cancer so this hits close to home…

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Alli November 14, 2015 - 5:28 am

Heather’s journey is a fascinating one, for sure. I was honored to share a little bit about her battle with lung cancer.

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Kiwi November 16, 2015 - 5:19 pm

I didnt know it was lung cancer awareness month! I have an Uncle who smokes and I do know lung cancer is preventable and good to know its more education information around this subject.

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Mesothelioma June 11, 2016 - 3:02 am

Hi there all, here every one is sharing these experience, thus it’s
nice to read this web site, and I used to go to see this web site everyday.

Reply

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