Alert
Close

Help Decide the Future of Aging. Join the White House’s Live Stream Tomorrow. Learn more

Highlights

Open
Military and Veterans Discount

FREE FUN!

AARP Games - Play Now!
AARP Staying Sharp: Keep Your Brain Healthy

 

You Could Choose Your Dream Vacation

Contests and
Sweeps

AARP’s Superstar
2015 Contest

Sing for a chance to win $5,000! Enter AARP’s Superstar 2015 Contest!
See official rules.

AARP Auto Buying Program

MOST POPULAR

Viewed

Inspire Awards 2011 Honorees

Lisa Niemi Swayze, Searching for a Cure

When actor Patrick Swayze was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in January 2008, he knew he didn’t have long to live. "My husband said, 'I'm a dead man,' " recalls Lisa Niemi Swayze, 54, an author, choreographer, and director in her own right.

Today, a year after Swayze's death at 57, Niemi Swayze is a spokesperson for the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network, working tirelessly to raise awareness of the disease that kills 37,000 Americans each year. Invoking the memory of her beloved husband of 34 years, she is a public speaker and lends her name to mailings and fund-raising. She’s also working to help pass federal legislation that will funnel more research dollars to pancreatic cancer, which is among the lowest funded of all cancers. Her dream is to see Swayze's name attached to a breakthrough drug for pancreatic cancer. "If his illness and my work have anything to do with a meaningful treatment for this disease, I would consider it the best thing I’ve ever done," she says. "I know Patrick would hold that in higher regard than his entire acting career."

Next: Pedro José Greer Jr., M.D., Caring for the Poor

420_line

— Video by Ben Baker

Topic Alerts

You can get weekly email alerts on the topics below. Just click “Follow.”

Manage Alerts

Processing

Please wait...

progress bar, please wait

Tell Us WhatYou Think

Please leave your comment below.

Discounts & Benefits

From companies that meet the high standards of service and quality set by AARP.

Members save on first-year membership fees to  AARP® Roadside Assistance from Allstate.

AARP Credit card from Chase

Members can earn 3% cash back on purchases with the AARP® Credit Card from Chase.

Member Benefits

Join or renew today! Members receive exclusive member benefits & affect social change.