Young woman becomes an advocate with the Lung Cancer Foundation of America after losing her father to lung cancer

April DeFalco-Rempfer works tirelessly to honor her father's memory through lung cancer awareness with help from the Lung Cancer Foundation of America

Thursday, October 11, 2018 — If you’ve spent any time on the roads and highways around Myrtle Beach, you have probably seen DeFalco’s Automotive & Towing trucks. They’ve been helping stranded motorists for years. Bill Rempfer was the owner, along with his wife, Cheryl, long before their family was involved with the Lung Cancer Foundation of America (LCFA).

Bill was a larger-than-life, strapping man: a former New Jersey police officer and an active community member who passed away at the age of 66 in November 2016. Today, his youngest daughter, April DeFalco-Rempfer, carries on her father’s legacy through her work with LCFA raising awareness of lung cancer.

April coordinated a special project in 2017 where two DeFalco tow trucks were wrapped with LCFA graphics as a tribute to her father and a fundraiser for LCFA. The Rempfer family wanted to use the trucks that help motorists day and night and are seen by thousands of people each day to honor their father’s legacy and raise awareness of the need for increased lung cancer funding.

Because of the spotlight that people like DeFalco-Rempfer have brought to lung cancer, new research is showing tremendous promise for easier ways to diagnose and treat lung cancer patients. A simple blood test called a liquid biopsy is showing promise for being a tool to diagnose lung cancer and find biomarkers that could lead to better treatments. Immunotherapy, which uses a patient’s own immune system to fight the cancer cells, is showing great promise. And targeted therapies- drugs that target specific biomarkers found in some tumors- attack just the tumor and not the surrounding healthy cells.

With Lung Cancer Awareness Month in November just around the corner, now is a perfect time to share DeFalco-Rempfer's story and the stories of other lung cancer patients working to increase research funding.