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LIVING FOR LIZ (L4L) is a nonprofit 501(c)3 that was created to honor a woman taken too early. Elizabeth Melde was a 25 year old newlywed who was diagnosed with Stage IV Lung Cancer. Six and a half short months later, she lost her battle. In honor of Elizabeth, and at her request, The Living For Liz Organization was formed. Our mission: To educate, bring awareness and assistance to those directly affected by lung cancer and to help fund research for the ongoing fight against this disease.


We have allocated over $200,000 to local lung cancer research, awareness, and patient assistance programs since our mission began in 2012.



Lung Cancer Facts

1.) Leading Cause of Cancer Deaths – Lung cancer is currently responsible for 29% of cancer deaths in the United States – more than breast cancer, colon cancer and prostate cancer combined.


2.) It Is The Least Funded Among All Major Cancers – Even though lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer deaths in men and women in the United States and throughout the world, it is the least funded among all major cancers. In fact, lung cancer receives only $2,488 per death in research funding from the National Institutes of Health compared to $16,978 per death for breast cancer research funding.  Lung cancer is the least funded of the major cancers affecting women. 


3.) No Test For Non Smokers – Presently, only 15% of lung cancers are diagnosed in an early stage, hence the five-year survival rate of only 15.6% – same as it was in 1971. Researchers are currently working on developing new less invasive screening methods for lung cancer.  However, a low dose CT scan is presently the only generally accepted method. Because of the risks that a CT scan presents, it is only used in older, heavy smokers. This is a major factor that results in nearly 24,000 nonsmoking lung cancer patients dying every year.


4.) The Majority of People Diagnosed Are Non Smokers – Although smoking is thought to be is the leading cause of lung cancer, the majority of people currently diagnosed with lung cancer do not smoke; 50% of these cancers occur in former smokers, and 17.9% in those who have never smoked at all.  In fact, The World Health Organization recently declared air pollution as a leading cause of lung cancer. In short, anyone with lungs — anyone who breathes — can get lung cancer.

To educate, bring awareness and assistance to those directly affected by lung cancer.


To help fund research for the ongoing fight against this disease.


To find a cure.




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