The stories of the people on this page are stories of courage, stories of love, stories of heroic struggle.

Celebrate with us the stories of these brave Lung Cancer Heroes. While they are not here to tell their stories themselves, these Heroes inspire us and motivate us to keep fighting this disease every day and in every way.

Please add the story of your Hero. Don’t forget to include some photos!  Or – Create a Tribute to your Hero and help to fund lung cancer research!

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Erik Hidalgo
Upland, CA
As told by his parents, Terry and Frank

Erik Hidalgo was just 24 years old when lung cancer took his life, six days before his first wedding anniversary. Erik was a non-smoker.

Highly motivated to succeed, Erik attended college while working nearly full time, ultimately earning a bachelor’s degree in social and behavioral sciences, with a concentration in economics, from California State University, San Bernardino in June 2001.

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Roy Spiegel
Los Angeles, CA
As told by his wife, LCFA President, Kim Norris

I didn’t grow up thinking “Oh, someday I want to start a lung cancer research foundation!” But life has a funny way of throwing you unexpected curve balls that can change the best laid plans in a nanosecond.

I am Kim Norris and I am the Co-Founder and President of the Lung Cancer Foundation of America (LCFA). In 1999, I lost my husband, Roy, to lung cancer when he was 47 years old after we waged a two-year battle trying everything possible to save his life…

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Connie Defalco-Blanchette
Ottawa, Canada
As told by her sister, Jane Ayres

On the December 3, 2011 morning that lung cancer took my beautiful sister, Connie Defalco-Blanchette, she had planned to watch a movie that day with her son Jason, who had driven hours to be with her. In her mind, death was not a possibility that she ever really gave in to, and certainly not that day. I was thousands of miles away, as I live in Los Angeles and she lives in Ottawa, Canada. Sadly, and I feel guilt about this still, I was not there at the end, but many of my brothers and sisters were, as well as her only surviving son and her husband…

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Lynda Roth
Laguna Beach,CA
as told by her partner, Lisa Richter

Born in a rural town outside of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Lynda began studying music at the age of seven and performed in choirs from age eight. Her professional career began at 21, the summer before she graduated from Brandeis University.

She responded to an ad in the local press looking for a female singer piano player. Band members Jimmy and John drove out to hear her…

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Desiree’s Uncle Jerry
Cherokee County, South Carolina
As told by Desiree Eubanks

When I was eight years old my uncle, Jerry, suddenly became very sick. October 18, 2003 we took him to the Gaffney ER and I waited impatiently in the waiting room. Although I was very young and didn’t quite understand what was going on I remember it like it was yesterday. I could see that everyone was very upset and my Mama’s friend came to pick my brother and me up from the hospital

At this time I didn’t know my uncle had cancer. The doctor had told us it was just a sinus infection….

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Lori Monroe
Bowling Green, KY
As told by the LCFA Board of Directors

Sometimes the impact of a single life is far deeper than a whole lifetime. And sometimes a lifetime is too short. In the case of Lori Monroe, both are true. A tireless and selfless advocate for lung cancer patients – including herself – Lori’s imprint on all of us will not soon be forgotten.

Lorraine “Lori” Gail Monroe, 55, co-founder of Lung Cancer Foundation of America…

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Jean and Perla Warren
Gold River, CA
As told by their daughter, Marie Fournier

On March 5th, 2010, four weeks before my parent’s 50th wedding anniversary, we received devastating news that my mother was in stage four of lung cancer. Our little family was broken. A strong family unit of my parents, my sister, myself, my husband, my two kids and my sister’s son were all in shock that something so irreversible could penetrate our perfect family. So we began the battle….

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Todd Hoffman
Hagerstown, MD
As told by his wife, Lisa

My husband Todd, had been a smoker since he was about 18 years old. He was the owner of his own Excavating Company and got along well with all his fellow competitors, as they always helped each other out. He enjoyed playing Texas Hold ‘em and he was a true animal lover. We purchased a farm in 2001 with hopes of raising our 2 sons the way we had been brought up…

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Karyn Lofgren Ericksen Bunnell
Houston, TX
as told by her son, Andrew Ericksen

Karyn was born Jan. 19, 1951, in Duluth, MN, the oldest child of William W. Lofgren and Nathalie Jane Quick. She enjoyed an idyllic childhood in Minnetonka, MN, where all of the kids are above average, and graduated from Minnetonka High School in 1969…

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Paul Bodner
Las Vegas, NV
In his own words

I had just played one of my best golf games in many years! But the pain in my hip had become so intense, that my golf partner said, “Hey Paulie, you really should have that checked out – I’m starting to feel badly taking your money!” I thought about it that evening, talked to my wife, Ellen, and we agreed to see my friend, an orthopedic surgeon….that was March 5, 2012 – thus began my journey…

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Jim Lamp
Templeton, CA
In his own words

My name is Jim Lamp & I have served 6 years in the Navy most on a Fast Attack nuclear submarine & 28 years working at a nuclear power plant, most recently as…

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Jacqueline Gillis
Nashville, TN
as told by her "second son" Matt

Jacqueline’s entire life was preparing her for this chapter in her story, a chapter of learning for her and for her to teach others how to be a phenomenal human being, this chapter started in late November of 2013. After…

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