‘If you can’t breathe, you can’t run’: Lung cancer 5k brings advocates and survivors together

About 250 participants ran or walked a 5k on Folly Beach Saturday morning to raise money and awareness for lung cancer research.
Published: Oct. 15, 2022 at 5:05 PM EDT|Updated: Oct. 15, 2022 at 11:28 PM EDT
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FOLLY BEACH, S.C. (WCSC) - About 250 participants ran or walked a 5k on Folly Beach Saturday morning to raise money and awareness for lung cancer research.

The 14th Annual Lung Force Run/Walk hosted by the American Lung Association raised $85,000 to prevent lung disease and promote lung health.

Planner of the event, Elaine Carew, Lung Force Cabinet Chair, lost her father to lung cancer exactly 10 years ago.

“So specifically for me, I’m here out here raising awareness for him and lung cancer,” Carew said. “It’s amazing. He’d be so proud. I think that everyone’s looking down on us today.”

The money raised will go to funding lung cancer research, raising awareness for lung cancer screening, helping people quit smoking and providing resources to people with lung cancer.

Anna Holloway, a lung cancer survivor, walked on Saturday and said it is inspiring to be around everyone at the walk.

“Last year when I finished treatment, I think I probably cried the whole way and it’s still emotionally scary, but having my family be able to come, just hearing other survivors’ stories too, and then people that are walking in honor of those that they’ve lost. I mean, it’s just an honor to be here,” Holloway said.

For participant Jerry Butler awareness about lung cancer for everybody is absolutely necessary for the future.

“That’s the most important part, to unify for one cause, and we can continue to exist to educate each other, our next generation,” Butler said. “We can get have a cure for this.”

The American Lung Association’s Lung Force initiative unites people impacted by lung cancer across the country to stand together against lung cancer.

Finishing in first place, Justin Szweda, attended the event with fellow teachers from Stall High School.

“Honestly, if you can’t breathe, you can’t run,” Szweda said. “So, I think a run is a perfect event to support lung health.”