Heather Von St. James is a cancer survivor. Every year, 3000 people are diagnosed with mesothelioma, and in 2005, she was one of them. At age 36, she was diagnosed with mesothelioma just a few months after her first and only child, Lily, was born. She was given just 15 months to live unless she underwent a drastic surgery to remove her left lung. Miraculously, she beat the odds and is still here eight years later.
Asbestos, the only known cause of mesothelioma, was used throughout the U.S. military in hundreds of applications. One third of diagnoses are members of the military due to the past use of asbestos in naval ships, military buildings, and vehicles.
Heather had never worked with asbestos, but her father did, and secondhand exposure as a child was enough to make her sick decades later. Due to that exposure she experienced the distress, agony, and anguish this disease can cause, but has found a positive and purposeful calling, fighting for victims of mesothelioma and other diseases caused by asbestos.
Because of that, Asbestos Awareness Week (April 1 – 7) is very close to her heart. We are dying to be heard, and this week creates a voice for the victims, and together we can work toward an end to mesothelioma and asbestos disease.
Check out her awareness page, and together we can help educate and protect people from this preventable disease!