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The one hundred honoree: Meryl Bralower

Donor Story

The one hundred honoree: Meryl Bralower

Mass General Giving

“Just because you never smoked, don’t think you won’t get lung cancer.” So warns the The Boston Globe editorial co-authored in 2006 by Meryl Bralower, a lifelong nonsmoker and since 2005, a lung cancer survivor.

The leading cancer killer in the United States, lung cancer accounts for 30 percent of all cancer deaths nationwide. Of these victims, 15 percent are nonsmokers, and eight out of 10 of these nonsmokers are women.

Since completing treatment, Meryl has been a creative and dynamic advocate, increasing public understanding of lung cancer and marshalling funds for research.

Meryl has organized events that raised more than $525,000 for research and she helped launch the annual Shine A Light on Lung Cancer vigil at the Prudential Center in Boston. In 2009, she founded Uniting Against Lung Cancer New England, which awards grants to such researchers as Lecia Sequist, MD, MPH, a thoracic oncologist at Mass General.

On the 6,000th episode of “The Bold and the Beautiful,” which aired on Feb. 7, 2011, Meryl, Emmy Award-winning actress Kathryn Joosten and opera singer Zheng Cao spoke of their experiences as lung cancer survivors before 26.2 million viewers.