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Former Marine in Fight for Life to Raise Funds for Double Lung Transplant

Friday, February 5, 2010 Medical PDA News J E 4
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Chuck Campbell's survival depends solely on the generosity of the American people in his quest to raise $1 million for a life-saving procedure his insurance company denied.

SALISBURY, Md., Feb. 4 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Chuck Campbell is a proud father of four, a former United States Marine, and a loyal husband and friend. As a United States Marine, Campbell trained with his fellow soldiers for combat, and now is fighting heart-wrenching war of his own. His enemyŚlung diseaseŚa battle so fierce that his very survival is dependent upon the kindness of total strangers.

More than four years ago, Campbell, 46, a sales manager for The Pohanka Automotive Group of Salisbury, Maryland, was diagnosed with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), and given less than one year to live unless he received a double lung transplant. What he didn't know was that his insurance company would only pay $80,000 of the total $550,000 cost, and the hospital would perform the surgery only if Campbell had an additional $450,000 in hand.

When his employer, Sandy Fitzgerald-Angello, vice president of Pohanka of Salisbury, who is herself battling cancer, heard about Campbell's plight, she knew his suffering first hand. "I know what it's like to deal with having a terrible disease, and I couldn't let such a wonderful man like Chuck suffer needlessly," Fitzgerald-Angello said. "So, we got together as a team and started a nationwide effort called, 'New Lungs for Chuck,' with the goal of raising a million dollars to give him the gift of life."

Nine months ago the fundraising effort began, and to date New Lungs for Chuck has raised more than $250,000 -- a fraction of the money needed to save Campbell's life. The dealership enlisted the help of the Salisbury Chamber of Commerce, and they came up with a $50 raffle where winners have a chance to win big-ticket prizes such as a new Mercedes Benz, and a luxury townhouse in Florida, among others. "We were very surprised when we found out how difficult it is for people who need life-saving transplants to get them," Fitzgerald-Angello said. "Then when we learned how much money patients have to pay on their own, we were floored. Chuck risked his life for our country, and the least we can do for him is to support him as he battles this devastating disease," she added.

"Words alone can't describe just how grateful I am for the love and support from Pohanka, and all of the generosity of the residents of Salisbury. I am also so touched that perfect strangers have supported me through this ordeal, and I hope someday to be able to repay them all," Campbell said.

The New Lungs for Chuck raffle drawing will take place on March 31, at the Pohanka Automotive Group of Salisbury, 2015 North Salisbury Blvd., Salisbury, MD. The Campbell family, and a wide range of supporters, will be in attendance to draw the winning ticket. The funds raised from the $50 raffle will be placed directly in the National Transplant Assistance Fund in his name. To learn more about the New Lungs for Chuck fundraising effort visit www.newlungsforchuck.com.

Editor's note: Chuck Campbell, his family and Sandy Fitzgerald-Angello are available for media interviews.

SOURCE Guerin Public Relations, Inc.

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