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Omahan John Atkinson Loses Battle With Lung Cancer

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John Atkinson, who gained national publicity in a celebrity US Open golf contest, passed away at his Omaha home on Thursday June 11, 2009 after a lengthy battle with lung cancer.

Atkinson was diagnosed with lung cancer in 2007 at the age 38. He was a non-smoker.

He became an advocate for lung cancer awareness and was able to advance that message nationwide through the round of golf televised in June 2008 on NBC.

The event was sponsored by Golf Digest Atkinson was selected to play when his essay was judged the winner in a contest that attracted more than 56-thousand entries.

Participants were challenged to break 100 on the US Open layout at Torrey Pines in San Diego and although Atkinson failed in his attempt, he received tremendous support in his efforts to help others affected by lung cancer.

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