One Woman’s Extraordinary Fight Against Lung Cancer
November is National Lung Cancer Awareness Month. The month of November brings lung cancer into focus; it’s time to increase public understanding of the disease, including its prevalence, approaches to screening and prevention, treatment options, and resources that offer updated lung cancer information throughout the year.
In honor of this month, I wanted to share the story behind the foundation that my mother, Elisabeth Leonard, founded in memory of her mother and my grandmother; The Elisabeth R. Woods Foundation.
The Elisabeth R Woods Foundation began with one woman’s extraordinary fight against lung cancer and has quickly established itself as a voice for non-small lung cancer. Elisabeth Woods was a loving wife, mother, sister, grandmother and friend who was just 63 years old when she received the devastating words; “you have IV Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer”. With grace and dignity, she spent the following three months fighting for her life but never losing sight of the needs of others.
Despite her suffering, she was always more concerned with the well-being of her family and friends. She always tried to find a way to spare others the anguish and grief this disease had brought upon others. Due to her misdiagnosis as having a common cold, her treatment was delayed, and the cancer had metastasized to the lining of her heart and her brain. Sadly, after three short, and very fast months, my grandmother lost her battle on September 8, 2000. As her family, it is our mission to carry out her legacy.
In 2012, my mother launched the Elisabeth R Woods Foundation in memory of her mother, my grandmother. The foundation was launched to provide the scientific community with funding to pursue innovative research. The mission of the Elisabeth R. Woods Foundation is to Raise awareness and support research on prevention, early detection, and treatment for Lung Cancer. Support from the Elisabeth R. Woods Foundation benefits research at the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory.
The ERW Foundation started with my grandmother’s extraordinary fight against lung cancer and her fight continues in her memory through my mother. So, during the month of November, I ask that you help in our fight to help raise awareness and support research for Lung Cancer. The ERW foundation needs your help in the fight to mitigate the stigma surrounding this terrible disease and to help empower women to FIGHT with strength and dignity.
Due to the lack of funding on the government level, it is so important now more than ever to raise awareness of the nation’s leading cancer killer so that we can try and reach out to private donors and non- profit organizations.
So, why support lung cancer research funded by the ERW Foundation?
- Lung Cancer is the #1 cancer killer among men and women in the United States
- 60% to 65% of all new lung cancer diagnoses are among people who have never smoked or are former smokers
- Over 226,000 people are newly diagnosed with Lung Cancer each year and more than 160,000 patients will die from this devastating disease, more than colorectal, pancreatic, breast, and prostate cancers combined
- Lung cancer has been the leading cancer killer of women since 1987, killing almost twice as many women as breast cancer
- Your gift will help us to educate people all over the world about the seriousness of Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer
Thank you for your support in our fight against Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer! Our goals will only be made possible through the generosity of caring and concerned people like you.