Archive for the ‘Changing the Face of Lung Cancer’ Category

Team Draft Co-founder, Chris Draft Leads ACS Advantage Humans Campaign

Tuesday, December 8th, 2015


The spirit of the Society’s “Advantage Humans” campaign conveys the emotions inherent in each and every one of us to deal with the fight against cancer. Photographed and directed by two cancer survivors, the ad campaign brings to life the range of raw, powerful emotions – rage, anger, courage, hope, defiance and others – associated with cancer through the stories of real cancer survivors and their loved ones in print, digital and direct response ads. A few of the individuals featured include:

Chris Draft (National Cancer Advocate & former NFL player): Tenacity. In 2010, Chris’ wife Keasha was diagnosed with advanced lung cancer after never smoking a day in her life. They got married on November 27, 2011 and she passed away one month later – but on their wedding day, they made a promise that they would work as a team to inspire hope for everyone affected by cancer. He has committed his time and resources to raising awareness for cancer.

Isabel Lopez: Courage. At 15 years old, Isabel was diagnosed with T-Cell Lymphoblastic Lymphoma on her birthday. Her family and friends show their love and support for Isabel through her online movement #wedancewithIsa. As a dancer, Isabel knows that no one dances alone and just like this journey she is on, she continues to see the love from everyone around her.

Lauren Smoke: Hope. Lauren was diagnosed with breast cancer while she was pregnant with her first child. She is currently undergoing treatment and recently gave birth to a healthy baby boy, Niko, which means victory.

Chris Marquez: Defiance. Chris is an LA-based actor, model and screenwriter. He received a liver transplant several years ago, and was then diagnosed with liver cancer in the donor liver. He has since undergone chemotherapy and preventive surgery, and the cancer is isolated to his bladder.

There are a lot of victories in life – if you’re lucky you experience them every day in some small way,” said Lauren Smoke. “Some things get in the way, but hope is what gets you through everything. What would we do without hope?”

To learn more about the Society’s work in research, prevention and detection, advocacy and service to support patients and caregivers of all ages, at all stages of cancer, visit You can also visit the Society on Facebook.

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About the American Cancer Society
The American Cancer Society is a global grassroots force of 2.5 million volunteers saving lives threatened by every cancer in every community. As the largest voluntary health organization, the Society’s efforts have contributed to a 22 percent decline in cancer death rates in the U.S. since 1991, and a 50 percent drop in smoking rates. We’re the nation’s largest private, not-for-profit investor in cancer research, ensuring people facing cancer have the help they need and continuing the fight for access to quality health care, lifesaving screenings, clean air, and more. For more information, to get help, or to join the fight, call us anytime, day or night, at 1-800-227-2345 or visit

Kathy Leiser: Changing the face of Lung Cancer

Friday, August 9th, 2013

Many people diagnosed with cancer ask “why me?” Kathy Leiser asks herself “what if?”
What if she hadn’t moved from Texas to Nashville to be closer to her two grown sons in 2009? What if she hadn’t heard that public service announcement about a Vanderbilt clinical trial looking for former smokers when she was headed to work that day? What if she, who spent most of her life caring for her family and let her own health care needs lapse, hadn’t picked up the phone to join the study?
She believes her guardian angels were looking out for her.

Leiser enrolled in the Nashville Lung Cancer Screening Trial with Pierre Massion, M.D., in 2011 to determine whether testing current and former smokers with a combination of bronchoscopy, CT scan, chest X-ray and pulmonary testing would result in the early detection of lung cancer.
“I didn’t think there was anything wrong with me,” said Leiser, a 63-year-old former smoker. “I had some shortness of breath but I wasn’t worried. As smokers, we are aware of the consequences of our actions. I just thought getting all those tests, and for free, was a good idea.”
Three days after testing, Massion called to say they found something and asked Leiser to come back in.

“I didn’t think it was going to be anything bad, bad. I don’t know why but I just didn’t,” said Leiser. “I took my son, Matt, with me because I knew he would remember things that I didn’t. Dr. Massion showed us my CT scan and up at the top of my right lung, there was a white spot.”
The spot was relatively small, only 2.8 centimeters, but Massion said he was 95 percent sure it was malignant. Next came a PET scan to determine if cancer was present anywhere else in her body, and the result was negative. After a consultation with thoracic surgeon Eric Grogan, M.D., MPH, Leiser underwent surgery to remove the Stage I nodule and the upper lobe of her right lung.
Four days later, she was released from the hospital and spent two tough months recovering at home, with her sons taking shifts to make sure their mother had round-the-clock care.

Today Leiser is cancer free, but she stops short of calling herself a cancer survivor.
“I got off easy, easy, easy compared to people that have to go through chemotherapy and radiation. Trying to hold onto a job while undergoing chemotherapy, now that’s a cancer survivor. I’m just someone who had surgery,” said Leiser.
Leiser takes ownership for her years of smoking, but cautions that smoking should not be used to stigmatize individuals and prevent them from seeking care. Smoking is not the only unhealthy behavior people engage in and lung cancer in never-smokers is still the sixth most common cause of cancer deaths in the country.

“I had a chest X-ray the year before my diagnosis, and no one saw anything,” said Leiser. “Without a CT scan, they never would have found it. That’s why I hope that a CT scan will become the standard of care, much like mammograms are for breast cancer and colonoscopies are for colon cancer.”

Mark P. Marini is Changing the Face of Lung Cancer

Saturday, July 27th, 2013

Thanks for selecting me as a Team Draft’s recipient as it was a special day for my wife and I and the owner of my company Anthony Cafaro Jr and his wonderful Gayle . I have been through quite a lot since my diagnosis in early June 2009. I’m a former smoker that quit in 1998 and became a fitness freak in 2001. I became passionate with running and took up competitive racing in both 5k’s and 10k’s at a local park in 2004 and was running about 30 races a year while running and training all year round . While on a six mile run after work with an attorney at my office, I thought that I felt good but on the way home I began to cough up fresh blood. I immediately went to my internist and following a week of testing team of doctors at the Cleveland Clinic, I was informed that I had lung cancer. My thoracic surgeon told me the next sixth months would be hell but I was in the best psychical condition of my life and I’m a type A personality with a great attitude so he told me I could beat this disease if I remained positive and upbeat . I did a split course treatment which was two “zaps” of radiation at 6:00 AM and 2:30, and then had chemotherapy on Mondays after radiation. Mondays were long as I left my house at 4:30 am and would return home at about 9:00PM. Luckily it was for only 12 treatments, but it was very exhausting . PS during those 12 days of treatment I ran about 4 miles at noon outside the Cleveland Clinic in between chemo and radiation treatments.

I then had surgery to remove my upper chamber of my left lung along with a portion of my lower lung. My thoracic surgeon prepared me by telling me it was the one of the most painful surgery’s known and he was not kidding. I got of the hospital in 5 days (normal stay was 6 to 8 days ) as I was determined to be normal . I was told most people take 2 months off on short term disability. I laughed when told that as I was working remote from my house about 10 days after my surgery. Although not moving very quickly I even walked a two mile fund raiser with my lovely wife about 16 days after my surgery. I was in the office about 16 days after my surgery.

After the surgery I had to finish up another round of radiation ( 2 weeks of double “zaps”) and chemotherapy for another three months . I’m proud to say, all while missing just a few days of work . I exercised 4 to 5 cardio sessions from the day I came home from my surgery also started weight lifting two times a week . And the reason I did all this was normalcy – most cancer patients just want to be normal and I was more determined than ever to make that happen !

I have been blessed by the following :1) a great support system in including my entire family but a special thanks to the following , my mother , my sisters, my sons and the true inspiration of my life my wife of 30 years as we have now been together 36 years. We met when I was I was a senior in high school and she was a freshman – she has been a rock thru this whole process and also our entire marriage 2) A great company that I work for called the Cafaro Company a private family owned by the same family since 1950 who gave me the greatest support and incredible medical coverage. The company owns and operates about 30,000, 000 square feet of mall and strip centers coast to coast 3 ) I was lucky and blessed to have one the top hospitals in the world a mere 60 miles from my home the world renowned Cleveland Clinic . My medical team consists of Dr Pennell oncologist, Dr Videdic radiologist, Dr Murthy thoracic surgeon, Dr Barnett neuro surgeon, and Dr Stevens neurologist. I termed them “the dream team of Doctors”. They were all so honest and compassionate with me which helped me thru the whole process.

Unfortunately the story doesn’t end there. I had three straight years of clean CT scans and my first of 2012 was clean back in March. I was losing some short memory and not finishing my thoughts so my Doctors wanted a MRI of my brain in late March. After a few tests, a malignant tumor was discovered on the left frontal lobe of my brain. I underwent brain surgery to remove the tumor and followed up with three weeks of radiation just to be safe. Again I missed about four days of work and was working remotely. I was back to work a couple of days later and traveling to a convention in Las Vegas only three weeks after my last radiation treatment (not really the brightest thing I ever did) .

The objective of this email is show you my plight and how with a great medical team, a great support system , and a great company I probably would not be here today writing this email . Again true special thanks to my wife , my “dream team” at the Clinic and not only the great Doctors but a staff from janitors , nurses, to physician assistants that are the best , most compassionate, well trained and positive employees in this country. Lastly to one the best organizations to work for in country the Cafaro Company in particular our Co President Anthony Cafaro Jr whose support, compassion, and caring nature are so heart felt and appreciated .

Now you can see how truly blessed that I am regardless what I have been through . My prognosis is very good and I have resumed full cardio activities, weight training at my gym about two months after my brain surgery. Yes I’m very lucky as I know that my faith and my God will always look over me and be there every step of the way .

I wake up every day which I consider a true blessing, Please feel free to pass this email along at either Chris Draft Foundation or the Cleveland Clinic. To all have great Holiday Season and Happy Healthy and Prosperous New Year. Hopefully I can meet Mr Draft thru my travels as it would be an honor to do so .

Mark Marini is Changing the Face of Lung cancer from TEAM DRAFT on Vimeo.


Samantha Mixon is Changing thr Face of Lung Cancer

Saturday, May 25th, 2013

ATLANTA — Samantha Mixon looks and feels great, but she is fighting stage four lung cancer and all the assumptions that people make about her disease.

“The first thing they ask is, ‘Did you smoke?’ It’s annoying at this point,” Mixon told 11Alive’s Jennifer Leslie.

She’s a non-smoker with no family history and only 33 years old.

She was diagnosed in November at Piedmont Henry Hospital after complaining of migraines. Turns out, she had a tumor that formed when the lung cancer metastasized to the brain.

“Telling my daughter was the hardest part about it,” Mixon said. “How do you tell her your mommy’s odds are not very good for five years, its one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do.”

Mixon is part of a troubling trend, according to Piedmont Atlanta thoracic surgeon Dr. Saeid Khansarinia.
“We’re seeing more and more lung cancer in people who don’t smoke, especially women,” Dr. Khansarinia said.

Dr. Khansarinia said no one really knows why, but he said new targeted chemotherapy drugs are working well for younger, nonsmoking women.
“They seem to have much better success in controlling the disease and putting some of our patients even into remission,” he added.

Mixon and her 8-year-old daughter Karley still struggle with statistics that show a very low survival rate.
But the new drugs are making a difference, and Mixon is determined to do her part to raise awareness.

“It can happen to anyone,” she said. “It’s not a smoker’s disease anymore.”
For more information about lung cancer, Piedmont Healthcare has a list of symptoms, risk factors and treatment options.

Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death in both men and women.

Lung cancer usually does not cause symptoms when it first develops, but symptoms often become present after the tumor begins growing. A cough is the most common symptom of lung cancer.
Other symptoms include: constant chest pain, shortness of breath, wheezing, recurring lung infections, such as pneumonia or bronchitis, bloody or rust-colored sputum and hoarseness.

A tumor that presses on large blood vessels near the lung can cause swelling of the neck and face.

A tumor that presses on certain nerves near the lung can cause pain and weakness in the shoulder, arm, or hand.

Abraham and Yolanda Almanza are Changing the Face of Lung Cancer

Wednesday, April 17th, 2013

In 1998, I was diagnosed with stage IV lung cancer at the age of 15. I would later turn 16 in the hospital not knowing if I would live to see my 17th birthday.

Being the son of a smoker (who through Gods grace has now quit), my initial thought was that secondhand smoke had something to do with my diagnosis. The doctors could never pinpoint the exact cause of my cancer but would later tell me it was probably acquired in utero and it just happened to lodge itself in my lungs. Whatever the case may be, I had cancer and needed to fight to see another birthday.

Through the power of prayer, family and medicine I was successfully treated with 4 rounds of chemotherapy and radiation treatment.

Before cancer became a turning point in my young life, I was just like any other teenager. I played sports, had friends and excelled in academics. Although I was administered an annual physical to play sports in school, it was never discovered that I had a malignant cancer slowly taking over my body.

Although I missed over a half a year of my junior high school year, I was able to graduate on time. I went on to graduate from college where I studied Psychology and minored in Spanish. I would even live as a missionary through my church for a year. I was soaking up as much as I could with this new lease on life.

As any cancer survivor would tell you, in the back of your mind, you initially feel you’re living on borrowed time. Once things settled down though, I started to reflect on my life and wanted to share it with someone and build a family of my own.

Meeting my wife, Yolanda and her struggle living with Asthma

I met my wife Yolanda during the summer of 2008 and we connected instantly when she shared with me that she suffered from Asthma since childhood.

In her own words:

As a child I never thought twice about running around and being a kid until I had my first asthma attack at the age of 9. I still remember how scared and helpless I felt as I tugged on my mom’s shirt to signal that I was having difficulties breathing. My mother, being asthmatic herself, was quick to assess the situation and rushed me to the emergency room. As a sat in the emergency room, hooked onto the nebulizer, I knew I wasn’t alone. Other kids were there getting the same treatment and innocently I believed that it was normal to be asthmatic. As the years went by I took my daily dose of medication to keep my asthma under control.

As a teenager I was overweight and continued my daily cocktails of medication for my asthma. By freshman year in high school I was 5’9″ and weighed 215lb. That same year the volleyball coach took interest in me and invited me to try out for the volleyball team, my first words were, “I can’t play volleyball, I’m asthmatic.” The coach looked at me and smiled, “You can still play, that’s not a problem at all.” I was offended that she didn’t think of my asthma as being a problem. After having that conversation all I thought about was playing volleyball, I wanted to play but was scared. I consulted with my mother who then made an appointment to speak to doctor. I could not believe he gave me the okay to play under close supervision and using my inhaler before any physical activity. It was difficult to train my body to run and jump because I had used my asthma as an excuse to get out of any physical activities.

After four years of volleyball, basketball, and softball I found myself using my inhaler less frequently. I dropped 40 pounds and felt great until one night I felt something I had not felt in a long time, an asthma attack. The asthma attack was progressively getting worse but I was in disbelief that this was happening again. As tears ran down my face, I walked up to my dad and simply said, “I can’t breath.” My father quickly took me to the hospital, where I was told that my asthma was now diagnosed as seasonal or mild asthma. I felt like I was back to square one again.

As a young adult, I started researching ways to strengthen my lungs. I came across an article in which I read that swimming was a great way to improve and possibly even cure asthma. The only problem was that, I didn’t know how to swim. I looked into local pools in my community and signed up for swimming lessons. What started out as a way to stay healthy ended up becoming a lifeguard and learning to help others.

For many years I used my asthma as a crutch to be less active and now as an adult, I have learned to keep my asthma in check. Asthma did not stop me from accomplishing my goals and becoming a better, healthier me.

Our lives together

We were married in July 2010 and are committed to living a healthy lifestyle both with diet and exercise. If it weren’t for diligent parents and caring health professionals we would not be here to share our story.

May 2012 will be 15 years since my lung cancer diagnosis and my wife hasn’t had an asthma attack in over 10 years. We are truly blessed and hope to encourage others to make their health, body and soul a priority in their lives.

 Abraham and his wife Yolanda are from the Bronx, NY. Abraham graduated from Iona College in 2004, with a degree in Psychology and currently works for the Make-A-Wish Foundation of the Hudson Valley. Yolanda graduated from Lehman College with a degree in Speech Pathology and currently works for the Department of Education. She is currently completing her masters in teaching English to speakers of other languages – TESOL.

Kim Wieneke is Changing the Face of Lung Cancer

Monday, April 15th, 2013

Hello. I’m Kim Wieneke, living in Portland, Oregon. I am 36, former athlete, and have stage 4 lung cancer. I learned about my condition in May of 2011. From that moment on, life has been drastically different.

I’ve been though standard chemotherapy, chest radiation, targeted chemotherapy, and whole brain radiation to keep the cancer managed. I hope, as all cancer patients do, that the treatment continues to work and that I’m always at least one step behind medical research.

Each day I get better at living with cancer. I still enjoy an active lifestyle. Pre-diagnosis activities like rock climbing, running, and working as a project manager in civil engineering have been replaced with walking, meditation, and blogging about my lung cancer experience at Aquarius vs Cancer. I’m determined to enjoy the life I have. It takes endless amounts of effort on my part. I am, as all people should be, accountable for my own happiness.

I hate that cancer has affected my life and those around me whom I love. My greatest fear is that someone I love will be diagnosed with cancer, specifically lung cancer. Like me, more and more, healthy, non-smoking, young people are identified with having this horrible illness.

Charlie Horner is Changing the Face of Lung Cancer

Tuesday, April 9th, 2013

When Charlie Horner joined the Army, he did so to serve his country.  He is a retired Army Lieutenant Colonel and served in the Vietnam War. 

From Charlie Horner’s own words and what the numbers show, lung cancer is the most deadly form of cancer and the second leading cause of death in this country. Veterans face twice the incidences of lung cancer as civilian populations, yet still smoke at a rate that is 50 percent greater. In an ideal world, you would never start smoking but, as anyone who has served in combat knows, that environment encourages rather than discourages smoking. While quitting smoking can reduce lung cancer risks, former smokers remain at very high risk for many years.

Environmental factors associated with lung cancer are grossly underestimated. At the direction of Congress, the Institute of Medicine began studying the health impact of Gulf War exposure to depleted uranium, the residue left after nuclear-grade uranium is extracted. Like radon, which is the second leading cause of lung cancer, depleted uranium, used in weapons and armor shielding, can give off radioactive products of decay that can be carcinogenic. While the first Institute of Medicine report in 2000 found insufficient evidence of a definite link to lung cancer, the 2008 update report now assigns “high priority” to continued review of the link with lung cancer. The institute has also been reviewing the impact of exposure to fuel exhausts, smoke from burning oil wells, kerosene cookers and heaters in enclosed tents and other battlefield emissions. The “strongest finding” was the association of combustion products and lung cancer.

Only 16 percent of lung cancer patients are currently diagnosed at a stage when they can be treated and cured; the symptoms for the disease are usually too difficult to detect until it’s too late. I was extremely fortunate in that I was diagnosed at an early stage. After extensive radiation and chemotherapy my surgeon was able to operate to remove the tumors. Researchers believe that the only way to improve the curability rate for lung cancer and drive down associated costs is to increase early detection and treatment options for patients.

Rapid advances in imaging technology are now giving those at high risk for lung cancer their best option for detecting the disease at its earliest, most treatable and most curable stage. Released earlier this month were the results of the National Lung Screening Trial conducted by the National Cancer Institute. The study found that low-dose computer tomography, or CT, screening can reduce the number of lung cancer deaths in a high-risk population by as much as 20 percent. The National Cancer Institute’s findings confirm the results of previous research that had proven that CT scans for high-risk patients can detect lung cancer when up to 92 percent of cases can be cured.

Despite these advancements and the deadliness of this disease, lung cancer research remains the lowest-funded cancer. Congress has recognized that military beneficiaries are in the highest risk category for lung cancer and has provided leadership in this area by appropriating funding to the Department of Defense for early detection. Unfortunately, DOD has dragged its feet in implementing this lifesaving screening initiative. The VA currently spends more than $1 billion a year to treat lung cancer.

Patient concern over the lack of available funding and data for lung cancer research has been the driving force behind the creation of a database that marks the first time that CT scans linked to personal data have been available for open research access on the Web. The Give-A-Scan program, launched by the Lung Cancer Alliance, enables patients to donate their CT chest scans and treatment information to a website that researchers worldwide can access. Improving the number, size and quality of CT scan open archives will improve research into the detection and treatment of this disease.

As servicemen and servicewomen, it’s our job to take action. Veterans must speak with their health care providers about risk factors associated with lung cancer and any symptoms they may be experiencing. It is important to discuss with your physician the pros and cons of a CT scan and get scanned only at centers experienced in lung cancer diagnosis. Donating your scan to the Give-a-Scan program will only improve research access to valuable information that could ultimately save your life.

Jessica Rice is Changing the Face of Lung Cancer

Tuesday, April 9th, 2013

Jessica Rice was diagnosed with Stage IV lung cancer at age 30 in November of 2011.  She has never smoked.  She does not have a family history.  Nothing ‘caused’ her cancer.  Prior to her diagnoses she was an established project manager for a Fortune 100 company.  Since her diagnoses, she has started her own blog at and has provided information and inspiration for many others living with this horrible disease.

Kathi Roberts– Changing the Face of Lung Cancer

Saturday, March 30th, 2013

Let’s start this week off on an upbeat note! And you can’t get more upbeat than our wonderful lung cancer survivor and Free to Breathe Charlotte committee member, Kathi Roberts.

Let me begin by saying I have had a very wonderful life. By 2006 my husband and I had raised our four children and they had successfully begun their adult lives. I had a job I simply loved – helping new teachers begin their careers in the classroom. I’m still married to a wonderful man that was and still is my best friend. We had just moved into a house for grown-ups- you know, master down, upstairs for company, all the bells and whistle that you would want. I am also a rule-follower in some things, especially when it comes to my health. Always ate healthy. Exercised to some degree. Went to every checkup and did every test one does as we age- and that list does get longer doesn’t it?

May 2006 changed my life drastically and forever: a bolt-from-the-blue diagnosis of Stage IV lung cancer, with bone and liver involvement, discovered when I fractured my spine. Me, a nonsmoker! If you are not familiar with cancer staging, stage IV is the absolute end of the line- cancer has spread from the original tumor- the doctor in fact used the term “peppered” when we asked how much bone involvement there was.
We all know that we are going to die someday, but I suddenly had a very definitive, in-your- face timeline that was absolutely terrifying.

So we stepped into the storm of tests and decisions and treatment; it was overwhelming. The first thing they tried to decide was whether to biopsy the lung first or the liver – both risky procedures, but necessary to decide the course of treatment. After a lot of discussion they decided to do an ultrasound instead and look at the liver. Remarkably, the good news came; the liver did not have tumors but cysts!

The newest treatment protocol at that time was a triple threat chemo: Avastin, Carboplatin and Taxol. Whew! Three weeks on, one week off for 3 months. Also Zometa every month for the bone mets. After that I started Tarceva and have since switched to Xegeva for my bones. I added an exercise program through Strides for Strength, designed for cancer patients, and holistic treatmenst and acupuncture as well.

So fast-forward six years. God has given me six more years, and I am thankful for every day. Is my life perfect now? Yes and no – I am not in remission; I have some minor and some major issues to deal with. I am still apprehensive with every scan or test, hoping for the word stable, knowing that someday that will change.

But my life is perfect in another way. I have discovered a small community of survivors who are all passionate about changing the perceptions of lung cancer. We are appalled at how little is known about it and we work fervently to talk about “the elephant in the room.” The Free to Breathe team has been such a welcome organization to come into our lives; we are all thankful for that. We are planning our second run in Charlotte and are eager to do even more in the coming years as we raise interest and awareness in both detection and treatment for lung cancer.

- Kathi Roberts
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Micheal Barkins is Changing the Face of Lung Cancer

Saturday, March 2nd, 2013

In August of 2012 I went to the doctor for a routine checkup. While the doctor was listening to my heart and lungs he told me to take in a deep breath which I did and I cough, he asked me how long have I been coughing, I said I do not have a cough, he ask me when was the last time I had a chest x-ray I said a few years ago, He said let’s do a chest x-ray. So we did and when the x-ray came back the whole left lobe of my lung was shades white, he asked me if I ever had pneumonia I said yes when I was a baby he then said it looks like you have pneumonia or a lung infection he prescribed me some antibiotics and referred me to a lung specialist.

I had to wait 4 days to see the pulmonary doctor. When I did see the doctor I asked him if it was cancer he told me it did not look like a typical cancer x-ray but he wanted to run some test so I was to come back on that Wednesday to get some lymph nodes biopsy. Well I didn’t make it till Wednesday… That Monday morning my wife rushed me to the ER. I had shortness of breath I could hardly breathe. I was admitted in the hospital I was told that I had fluid around my heart and that is why I was having problems breathing, they had to perform a procedure to drain the fluid that had accumulated in the pericardia sac of my heart. So that was done I was in the hospital for a week and a half having all kinds of test done and every test was coming back negative for cancer, even though I had symptoms that appeared to lead to cancer, finally my doctor said let’s do a lung biopsy.

Three days later the doctor came into my room and set down beside me and told me and my wife that I have stage 4 Lung Cancer and my prognosis was 6 months and I could try Chemotherapy to try to prolong my life that since I was in good shape that I might response well to the Chemo.

I was numb and my family was devastated. He told me he will recommend me to an Oncologist. I asked if I could go home he said yes, The Oncologist came in and reconfirmed with me what the doctor had told me. We discussed the time for the chemotherapy treatments to start.

I went home and a week later I was back in the hospital with the fluid around my heart again. This time I had heart surgery the surgeon cut a window in the pericardium sac off my heart so the fluid could flow out I was told after this it would not return. I had a PET scan done and the results were really bad. The cancer had metastasized to my bones, pericardium sac of my heart, my skull, the thyroid gland, and the lymphatic system. The prognosis changed from 6 months to 3-5 months without chemotherapy and maybe longer with chemotherapy.

So we decided to do chemotherapy. I was scheduled for 6 rounds of chemotherapy 5 hours a day once every 3 weeks. After the third round of chemotherapy I had to get a PET scan done to see if the treatment was working or if the cancer had progressed.

Praise be to GOD the most high, we had to wait 3 weeks to get the results of the scan. On the day when we went to get the results the doctor came in to the room and said “Michael, Michael, Michael I—we have never seen anything like this. You had stage 4 lung cancer, but we can’t find cancer anywhere in your body, we checked the scan twice to make sure we were reading it right!”

Hallelujah, praise God. We know that prayer and faith in GOD and the strength of my family is what healed me. On January 11, 2013 a week after my last round of chemotherapy I had another scan and I am by the grace of GOD still cancer free. We thank GOD everyday for performing a miraculous healing and showing favor to our family and we stand on faith that when GOD put his hands on it, it is resolved.