The Voice

Anyone Can Get Lung Cancer: Here is One Thing You Can Do

The safety of our family is a top priority especially now with the threat of the coronavirus invading our world.  Staying home is suggested as a means of prevention. However, there may be another invisible killer lurking in what you think is the safety of your home. Years ago, the oncologist told my husband that he had lung cancer. We sat together listening to those words. We were numb. My husband, Joe, was not a smoker, and we led a healthy life style. Asking the doctor what could have caused this, his response was “We know radon causes lung cancer.” We had never tested our home and didn’t know that radon gas exposure is the leading cause of lung cancer in nonsmokers!

Gloria and Joe Linnertz

Joe lived six weeks after his diagnosis, and it was one month after his death that I discovered we were living with over 4 times the EPA action level of radon for 18 years. I spent the next year and half of my life educating all the legislators in Illinois about the danger of radioactive radon gas exposure. On August 16, 2007, the Illinois governor signed the Radon Awareness Act into law. August 16 would have been our 32nd anniversary. 

I urge all of you to test your homes, schools, and workplaces for radon. If you do have a mitigation system installed, please perform a simple test each year to ensure the accurate performance of the system. 

You can go to Citizens for Radioactive Radon Reduction for more information on radon, subscribe to our free electronic magazine on lung cancer and radon, order a test kit, and join our crusade to save lives.