Why We Climb

We climb for our friends and loved ones who suffer from lung cancer and all lung diseases. Let's make sure everyone can benefit from healthy lungs.

Tushar Agarwal

I climb because lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death in every ethnic group. I climb to raise awareness. I climb for those moments that knock us down and we manage to get back up. I climb because today and everyday each step we take can impact and save lives. I climb for you and others because we are one team one dream.

I hope you will join me and our amazing supporters at the Fight For Air Climb on March 2nd.

Tara Ramroop

My dad died of pulmonary fibrosis in 2012. He was strong and healthy for as long as I could remember — people often commented on how youthful he was, despite being much older than other dads in our circle. After his diagnosis in his late 70s, he kept a small oxygen tank in the car to give him a boost when he needed one. Then, he needed a larger tank, then tanks plural, delivered weekly. Eventually, he relied on a machine that ran all day and night simply to perform an essential function many of us take for granted.

In March, I'll complete my 9th Fight for Air Climb for everyone who can't breathe on their own. Since my first Climb in 2014, that now includes an uncle, many who shared their stories with me because of this fundraiser, and millions of Americans suffering with Covid-19.

Dave Martin

How did I get to this point? I’m participating in this year’s Fight for Air Climb as a volunteer because I know firsthand how being breathless can be terrifying. I have cystic fibrosis, a genetic disorder in which my lungs and other organs clog with mucus.

When I was diagnosed with CF at age 19, I was told I had an average life expectancy of 25 years. Well, I graduated from Michigan State University with a Bachelor of Science degree and began work in software consulting.

I remained quite active — playing soccer, softball, traveling, and spending family time with my lovely wife and young twins -- until about 10 years ago. That is when I had to leave my technology job because just walking in from the parking lot exhausted me. Climbing a single flight of stairs required stops, and it got to the point that I would get winded brushing my teeth.

Then in 2011, a pulmonary embolism put me on oxygen 24/7 for 18 months, forcing me to lug big green oxygen tanks whenever we left our home. By the grace of God, I received a double-lung transplant in 2013, and it was so incredible to take a deep breath for the first time in years. My pulmonologist challenged me to join a Great Strides — Cystic Fibrosis Foundation fundraiser, and 5 months post transplant I climbed El Capitan.

Today I am double nickels (55). While I’m feeling quite well considering, I did receive the gift of a kidney from a fraternity brother in 2021. And diabetes-related neuropathy in my feet keeps me from making the Climb this April. So, I am your boots on the ground, volunteering with the American Lung Association — NorCal Division.