By Circle of Light Spot Light Donor, Mary Zimmer
Our mother, Margaret Asenbrenner, was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer in February, 2010. She was a happy and healthy wife and mother of eight children. The diagnosis took us all by surprise as lung cancer was not something my siblings and I thought much about and never envisioned our mother as a lung cancer risk as she was a nonsmoker. She lived seven months with the disease until she passed away in September, 2010.
Our mother was an amazing lady and inspiration to all of us kids. She spent her life giving of her time and love to our family and many others. We learned about A Breath of Hope Lung Foundation from our good friend Gary Brausen who had been diagnosed with lung cancer as well. Gary shared with my husband Bill and me the mission of A Breath of Hope Lung Foundation and the amazing work the organization is doing. I feel the model is very compelling in that it focuses on three key areas: lung cancer awareness and early detection, patient support and research to improve treatments. I am particularly energized about the recently announced research fellowships.
My siblings and I had been looking for some way to get involved in the fight against lung cancer as a way to “do something” about the devastating disease and honor our beloved mother with the same spirit of giving and love that she exemplified in her life. We have participated in A Breath of Hope Run/Walk for the last two years. This year we had 20 family and friends participate on “Team Margaret”.
As a family, we feel we lost our mother way too early in life due to lung cancer. She had so much more life in her left to live. Our hope in getting involved with A Breath of Hope Lung Foundation is to ensure that other families don’t lose their loved ones to lung cancer before their time.