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Kathryn Joosten of 'Desperate Housewives' shines her Emmy-nominee spotlight on lung cancer research


Ask Kathryn Joosten about lung cancer. Go ahead. After all, the Emmy-nominated "Desperate Housewives" actress has survived it -- twice.

"Lung cancer continues to be the least funded in dollars of the four major cancers," Joosten said, "yet it takes more lives than all of them combined." To battle that, Joosten and 8-year-old lung cancer survivor Gabby Wilson will be on the oceanfront in Santa Monica on Saturday morning leading a walk/run to benefit lung cancer research.

Joosten was a 45-year smoker -- she kicked the habit in 2001 when she was first diagnosed -- but people like Gabby and Jill Costello (see the video at the end of this post) are a reminder that lung cancer doesn't limit itself to those with a smoking habit. "I hope the public will begin to see that the stigma attached to this is incorrect in every way," Joosten said.

"I hope the public can see that people with lung cancer do survive."

Still, the two-time Emmy winner had something to tell E! Online on Saturday with regard to "Mad Men," a show that unfolds each week amid a cloud of Lucky Strike smoke.

"I think they should at least have a disclaimer at the front of the show saying smoking is relevant to the time and place with the subject matter we're dealing with," but that it causes cancer. "They should at least do that."

The 5K walk/run, presented by the Bonnie J. Addario Lung Cancer Foundation, begins at 9 a.m. Saturday, with awards and a celebration to follow. Registration is open until 7:30 a.m. the day of the event -- click here for more information.

-- Christie D'Zurilla

Photo: Gabby Wilson, left, and "Desperate Housewives" actress Kathryn Joosten are both lung cancer survivors. Credit: handout

Comments () | Archives (2)

Thank you Kathryn Joosten! I am so inspired by Kathryn, Gabby, and Jill.

I can only think of a few reasons for the lack of funding for this disease: 1) the stigma keeps fundraising and awareness down 2) the majority of those with the disease die within the year of their diagnosis so there is not enough time to build a major movement 3) the lack of funding creates a cycle that enforces the stigma, lack of education, and in the end punishes the victims, friends and family, and our future. Enough is enough.

If you can't make it to Santa Monica walk on Saturday, but are in the SF Bay Area on September 12, join me in "Jog for Jill" in Golden Gate Park. Jill was working on this event until the very end and fully intended on walking the walk and beating lung cancer. Let's do it!

There is no reason with such incredible medical advancement that the survival rate of lung cancer should be the same as it was 40 years ago. The world cannot afford to lose another like Jill.

Thank you for this article!

Kathryn thank you so much for everything that you are doing to raise awareness for Lung Cancer. My best friend Jill Costello passed away two months ago from the disease. She was 22 years old, a non smoker, athlete, and Cal Berkeley graduate. Her final message to all of her friends and family was "BEAT Lung Cancer!". You are helping her deliver that message. Thank you!


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