Utah woman travels to Capitol Hill to push for cancer research funding

Utah woman travels to Capitol Hill to push for cancer research funding. (Photo courtesy of American Lung Association)

(KUTV) — Salt Lake City lung cancer survivor Sarah Pearson will join other survivors from across the country on Wednesday to urge Senators and Representatives in Washington, D.C. to continue funding for research against lung cancer.

Lung cancer survivors will be joined by caregivers and advocates, who say they also want to share why quality and affordable healthcare is crucial for people struggling against lung cancer, which is the leading cause of cancer deaths, according to a news release.

Pearson is participating in the American Lung Association's third annual Lung Force Advocacy Day because her mother died of lung cancer two months after being diagnosed — and Pearson says her mother "never smoked a day in her life," a news release states.

“It still seems so unreal to me. She had a large mass in her lung and had to have an oxygen concentrator do most of her breathing for her. Every breath made her moan in pain. I just wish we could have found it sooner and maybe gotten it treated. I miss my mom so much,” Pearson said.

“I believe that my mom's story doesn't need to be the norm," Pearson said. "Lung cancer doesn't have to be a death sentence. There needs to be more research and awareness made available to the public."

According to a news release, 900 Nevadans will be diagnosed with lung cancer in 2018, 470 of whom will die.

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