RICHMOND (WRIC) – Lung cancer kills more people in Virginia every year than breast, colon and prostate cancers combined.
Jessica Grow is a registered nurse at HCA’s Thomas Johns Cancer Hospital. She pursued a career in healthcare after watching her grandmother die from lung cancer…then her grandfather…then her aunt.
“She passed away last April on my floor while i was up there so I’ve definitely dealt with it personally,” she says.
And as an oncology nurse, grow sees it every day.
Lung cancer only has a five year survival rate of 16 percent.
But this weekend, hundreds of walkers and runners in Richmond will fight back.
Knowing how much pain it causes, grow organized Saturday’s Free to Breathe event in Richmond — a time when members of the community team up to raise awareness and money for lung cancer research.
“Raising funds will really improve patient survival and patient outcomes.”
Last year, this walk and run in Richmond raised $37,000 — all proceeds supporting programs aimed at doubling the number of survivors by 2022.
Grow says a lung cancer diagnosis often comes with a stigma because smoking is the main cause, but it’s not the only one.
“It’s not a cancer that should be someone’s fault,” she says. “They didn’t do this to themselves so we need to be out there and advocate for these patients.”
The Free to Breathe Walk and Run is this Saturday, March 8 at Innsbrook.
For more information, click here.
Copyright 2014 by Young Broadcasting of Richmond