To honour Canadians who have quit smoking, The Lung Association is launching a new campaign called "Celebrating Quitters" as part of National Non-Smoking Week. "We're asking Canadians to share their quit stories with us so that they can inspire others," says Nora Sobolov, president and CEO of The Lung Association.

Anna Bertram, a professional model, says she struggled for 10 years with her smoking addiction. "I started smoking when I began my modeling career at the age of 16. Looking back, I recognize the role that peer pressure played; the need to fit into the industry and the idea of maintaining a "cool" image played in my decision to start smoking. For 10 years I struggled with the challenges of nicotine addiction. I finally realized it was a life journey to quit. I am now smoke-free."

Reginald Mercredi quit smoking 12 years ago. "I started smoking when I was 14. My sister smoked and I bummed a cigarette off of her. I started out just smoking 3 cigarettes a day. Before I quit, I was smoking a pack and a half a day," says the former smoker from Cross Lake, Manitoba. "Smoking made me feel sick. It gave me headaches. So when I was 28, I quit cold turkey.

"My dad died of a rare nasal cancer. He smoked all his life. My uncle Charlie died of lung cancer. My message to everyone is: Don't start smoking."

Reginald's wife Eugennie quit four years ago. "After I quit, I noticed that I didn't have colds every month. I used to get colds all the time and cough a lot. My breathing is healthier now," says Eugennie Mercredi. "My taste has improved. I feel good. My blood pressure is back to normal."

Eugennie and Reginald Mercredi are actively spreading awareness about smoking in their Northern Manitoba community through a grass-roots initiative called the Blue Light Project. For more than a year, this crusading couple has been handing out blue lights to those who have declared their homes as smoke free.

Learn more

"How I quit smoking" - read personal quit stories by other Canadians
Learn how to quit smoking
Get more information about National Non-Smoking Week

Established in 1900, The Lung Association is one of Canada's oldest and most respected health charities, and the leading national organization for science-based information, research, education, support programs and advocacy on lung heath issues.

The Lung Association

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