Facing an unwanted diagnosis

In 2014, Diane Spry’s life was going great. She had a job she loved working in business development at a Ford dealership, and she was enjoying spending more and more time with her boyfriend, Robert. When she developed a cough that lingered for close to a month, she didn’t think much of it, let alone guess that she was already fighting lung cancer

One Sunday evening, however, she and Robert were en route to a party when Diane realized that, for the first time in her life, she was wheezing and, perhaps more concerning, she had a deep pain in her upper left chest. Robert and Diane decided to forgo the party and made a visit the ER instead.

While at the hospital, Diane learned that she had a blood clot, a pulmonary embolism in her right lung, and a mass on her left lung. She was admitted, underwent a bronchoscopy that Wednesday, and received her diagnosis on Friday: stage 3b non small cell adenocarcinoma. Diane was just 30 years old, had never smoked, and had no history of lung cancer in her family.

“He’s always there for the emotional stuff.”

Robert, for his part, was no stranger to lung cancer, having lost his own father to the disease prior to having met Diane. Throughout chemotherapy, radiation, surgery and two clinical trials, he never left her side. In fact, on Valentine’s Day 2016, Robert asked Diane to become his wife.

Fighting lung cancer with life: Diane’s milestones

Aside from her marriage to Robert, Diane has counted many other blessings since her lung cancer diagnosis. Like other survivors such as Jill, Ivy, Juanita, Bobbi, she feels blessed to have connected with many other lung cancer patients and to have been afforded opportunities she otherwise would not have had while fighting lung cancer, like meeting Katie Couric at the Stand Up To Cancer live telecast!

Diane has chosen not to discuss her prognosis with her medical team. She is currently on oral medication and has an infusion every three weeks. During the course of her treatments, Diane was unable to work, but today, despite having moved from stage 3b to stage 4 lung cancer, she is currently feeling well enough to return to work and is thrilled to be looking for a new job.

Ongoing advances in lung cancer research have enabled Diane to live a full life, marry, and be strong enough to embark on a new career.