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Aricle of our SJ. Heather Saler Lung Cancer walk...


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I have a friend that works for the TREND Newspaper which is a paper that is sent to homes in South Jersey it also is in circulation in Phila and surrounding areas.

I asked her to advertize our walk and to feature Heather. I got a response from the editor who wanted to do a story, so I passed it onto her husband Brad. It just came out today.

http://www.philly.com/community/nj/burl ... Saler.html


Posted on Wed, Oct. 8, 2008

Annual Lung Cancer Walk honors life of Heather Saler

By Teresa Duckworth

For My Community Trend

On Saturday, Nov. 1, participants from around South Jersey will carry on the legacy of Heather Saler by walking in the fifth annual Heather Saler Walk for Lung Cancer at Cooper River Park.

Heather, who passed away on May 9 from non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), spearheaded the event since 2004 after her diagnosis in 2003 at the age of 33.

Formally known as the South Jersey Lung Cancer Walk/Run and Rally, the idea for the walk came about after Heather and her husband, Brad, saw something about a walk for the American Heart Association.

After doing some research online, Heather found there were no walks in the area to promote lung cancer awareness and to raise funds for needed research to find a cure.

“She said, ‘I’m going to do it [start a walk]’. And I said, ‘Go ahead, you have nothing else to do,’” said Brad, joking with his wife.

The Mount Laurel resident and mother of a young son, Tyler Rudnick, had given up her position running a training program for new paralegal recruits at a law office in Philadelphia. She stopped working a year-and-a-half after receiving surgery to remove her upper right lung, and chemotherapy and radiation treatments.

“We decided she shouldn’t work anymore, and take care of her body,” said Brad.

It was Heather who approached the LUNGevity Foundation based out of Chicago, a private provider of research funding for lung cancer, to formulate what would become the template for organized fundraising events to benefit the foundation.

According to Jill Feldman, the president of the LUNGevity Foundation's letter on its Web site (www.lungevity.org) informing members of Heather’s passing, Heather was one of the first patient advocates for Lung Cancer Support Community (LCSC) and introduced LCSC to LUNGevity. Now, LCSC is part of LUNGevity.

With the help of Brad, who was able to find sponsors, including Cooper Hospital, and a few other people who lost family members to lung cancer, Heather oversaw the inaugural walk in November 2004. That year, they raised $31,000.

“We had 100 to 200 people the first year,” said Brad.

Because of Heather’s efforts, LUNGevity, which had not considered regional events, established a national events program. Now, there are almost 40 events around the country to raise money and awareness.

From the past four walks, over $250,000 has been raised. Even Tyler, now 11, has raised money the past four years by running a lemonade stand.

This year, Brad, who has formed a committee and now delegates much of the work involved, hopes to raise $100,000 and have 500 to 700 people participating.

“After the walk, we’re having a health fair. Different organizations will come and provide information on treatments and prevention. One company is going to come and speak about the effects of radon on the body,” said Brad.

Radon is one element that researchers believe might be a cause of lung cancer.

Most people are under the impression that only smokers get lung cancer, but according to LUNGevity, approximately 50 percent of the people diagnosed with lung cancer have either never smoked or are former smokers.

“The answer is they don’t know [what causes it]. There are a lot of statistics that young women are getting it, and they don’t know why — non-smokers,” said Brad.

Heather was an example of a non-smoker who did not grow up around secondhand smoke, but got lung cancer anyway, more specifically non-small cell adenocarcinoma, the most common type of lung cancer, which originates in glandular tissue.

According to LUNGevity, lung cancer kills more women each year than breast, ovarian, uterine and cervical cancers combined. It is the leading cause of cancer deaths in the U.S.

Since his 38-year-old wife’s death in May, Brad focuses on work and the needs of Tyler.

Along with continuing the walk, which he describes as a festival, Brad’s next goal is to set up the Heather Saler Foundation and help families offset some of the costs and medical needs associated with the treatment of lung cancer.

“I’d love to get some money to help some family,” said Brad.

My comment:

I hope all our friends who live near here will be at the walk. That inludes, Ginny. Sharon, JB, Dar & Jack, Gail and anyone else who can attend.

My goal is 3000.00 and I'm almost there, I know I will surpass that this year.

Maryanne :wink:

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