In January 2013, then 49-year-old Jennifer Glass was diagnosed with an advanced form of the most common type of lung cancer seen in nonsmokers — just four months after her wedding. Jennifer’s husband, Harlan, found a small lump at the base of her neck, and tests soon revealed that the source was a tumor on Jennifer’s left lung that had metastasized.
Jennifer pursued every available option to extend her life, and she succeeded for more than two years. But she also understood the aggressive nature of her illness and sought options for ending her suffering when her cancer, and the pain it would cause, reached its inevitable peak. Jennifer was devastated to learn how limited those options were in her home state of California.
Jennifer used her keen sense of humor, referring to herself as “a top-of-my-lungs kind of girl” because her cancer originated at the top of her left lung. Outraged and motivated, she became a tireless advocate for death with dignity in California and nationwide.
That kind of outspokenness came naturally: A corporate communications professional, Jennifer knew exactly how to apply her skills to deliver a message. She launched a popular and intensely personal blog about living with cancer, wrote op-eds and guest columns, produced videos, and spoke out via NPR, Parade Magazine and other media as well as before her representatives in the California Legislature.
In the spring of 2013, she underwent months of aggressive chemotherapy and radiation that all but eliminated the tumors in her neck and halted growth of the primary tumor in her lung. She was in remission for some time, but sadly, in 2015 the cancer returned. Jennifer learned it had spread to her liver, abdomen, pelvis, cervix and brain; she entered hospice soon after. On the evening of August 11, 2015, Jennifer passed away peacefully with Harlan at her side.
News About Jennifer
An Interview With Jennifer Glass
Jennifer Speaks on the End-of-Life Option Act
A Photo a Day – One Year with Lung Cancer