LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - Hundreds of people will participate in the Fight for Air Climb at Lynn Family Stadium on Feb. 6. The event raises awareness and money for lung disease and lung cancer research.
The event typically takes place in the stairwells of the PNC Tower, but was reimagined as an outdoor climb to ensure social distancing amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Elizabeth Moir will complete the climb for the first time as she continues her own lung cancer battle.
Moir, 30, learned of her lung cancer diagnosis in 2018, just a day after Mother’s Day. Her lung problems began when she was 30 weeks pregnant with her second child. Severe lung pain sent her to the emergency room struggling to breathe. Doctors diagnosed her with pleuritic lung pain.
Then, in April 2019, Moir began to cough up blood. A myriad of tests determined the cause was stage IV lung cancer.
“I was shocked,” Moir said. “I knew something was wrong, but I didn’t think it was cancer because I take pretty good care of myself.”
A number of medical scans found that Moir’s cancer had spread to her liver, rib cage, spine and pelvis. The scans also found an unrelated medical emergency, a colloid cyst in her brain that had to be removed with surgery.
Luckily, Moir’s lung cancer was ALK positive, and was eligible for a targeted treatment. After brain surgery, she began chemotherapy pills that worked quickly.
“Within 48 hours, I didn’t have a cough,” she said. “Now, I feel relatively normal. The worst side effects are fatigue, extreme sun sensitivity and heat sensitivity.”
However, the targeted treatment only worked for a few months, and Moir’s cancer returned in 2020. She later began traditional intravenous chemotherapy, and continues to fight the disease.
Almost three years after her initial diagnosis, Moir is participating in the Fight For Air Climb to raise awareness.
“The main reason I want to raise is awareness is that I had no idea I could get lung cancer,” she said. “I am a nonsmoker who has never been around secondhand smoke. When I went through the whole diagnosis process, everyone asked if I smoked. I feel like it is what we were taught. I had never heard that you don’t have to smoke to get lung cancer. I like to think that if I had known, I would have caught it earlier.”
Registration for the Fight for Air Climb is open through Jan. 25. The event is open to individuals and groups. The climb consists of 2,000 total steps.
Money raised at the Fight For Air Climb will fund the Lung Association’s efforts to end lung cancer and lung disease, as well as support the Lung Association’s COVID-19 Action Initiative.