Awareness • Early Detection • Treatment • Research • Survivorship

Survivor at Every Stadium: Atlanta Falcons

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Atlanta, GA. ATL lung cancer survivor-advocate, and 4th place Super Bowl Challenge winner, Patty Watkins represented Team Draft at the NFC Championship game. Patty watched the Atlanta Falcons defeat the Green Bay Packers in the final game at the Georgia Dome.

My name is Patty Watkins wife & mom and I’m a Stage 4 Lung Cancer Survivor/Advocate/WARRIOR. Diagnosed 34 months ago on Jan. 29th at age 57 in otherwise perfect health & totally out of the blue one day. I walked 4 miles a day and participated in group classes 3 x week at the YMCA. I was totally blindsided. Statistics told me that my 5 year survival rate would be in the 1%. But, I don’t believe it! Thanks to the power prayers from prayer warriors to a loving God, incredibly knowledgeable doctors, nurses and cancer researchers looking for precision targeted medicine- I live. All of those key elements have enabled me to live this last 3 years in a fairly normal and very joyful way. I am only one of the MANY faces of lung cancer that are pleading for more funding going into research and new cutting edge targeted drugs to treat this insidious disease that claims more lives that any other cancer! Research, clinical trials with new agents and diagnostic screening are key in eradicating the disease that is the #1 KILLER.

In 2012, we, Team Draft, launched our inaugural Survivor Series initiative on CNN during a nationally-televised prime time special focusing on lung cancer and our National Campaign to Change the Face of Lung Cancer.

Our Survivor at Every Stadium, leverages our connections with the NFL, its teams and players with our relationships with many of the top cancer centers in the country. As a part of our International Campaign, the games allow us to celebrate our survivors, raise lung cancer awareness, and give hope to those battling the disease, as well as shine a light on the important work being done at cancer research and treatment centers around the country.

Team Draft’s goals are to create a unique experience for participating survivors and to raise awareness on a local, national, and international level by using each game and each survivor’s story to weave a broader narrative about the state of cancer and the hope that now exists for those battling the disease.

We kicked off our 3rd Lung Cancer Survivors Super Bowl Challenge on November 1st, 2016, which builds on the success of our established Survivor Series by using the games at the heart of that initiative to create buzz for the Super Bowl Challenge and, in turn, funds for research and awareness.

It’s the NFC playoffs & final game to be played Atlanta Falcon’s stadium, Sunday the 22nd!  I’ll be one of many thousands of people milling around in the crowd and with my Falcon’s shirt, blending in, cheering them on to victory.  No one will know that I have stage 4 lung cancer (which is the #1 Killer of all cancers).  I am one of the fortunate ones that have a targeted therapy drug for my very rare (1%) genetic mutation, thanks to lung cancer research. I have been blessed by 36 months of life after being diagnosed in Jan 2014. The odds told me I had a 50% chance of only living 8 months past diagnosis & a 15% chance of living 5 years.
 Lung cancer research funding is shamefully dismal, being a mere 10% of what is spent on breast cancer (whose patients have a 89% chance of surviving 5 years). The survival rate of breast cancer patients vs. lung cancer patients is a direct correlation of the money spent on research in each group.  The reason for the differential is due to the stigma that lung cancer is caused by smoking, which is a total fallacy as 60% of all new lung cancer cases are non-smokers or never smokers. Lung cancer kills 4 X more people than breast, and 3 X more than colorectal cancer(the 2nd leading cause of cancer in the U.S.)   I’m proud to represent Team Draft at the NFC this Sunday and help change the face of lung cancer.
In an effort to help fund more research I have been participating in the Super Bowl Challenge for Lung Cancer 2017 as part of TEAM DRAFT by raising money that will go directly to the Emory Winship Cancer Center-Cabral Franklin Fund. The Cabral Fund targets money only for lung cancer research.  It’s very important that the money I’m raising will not only directly impact my own survival but also the survival of many others fighting this endless battle.  Atlanta’s Emory Winship Cancer Institute needs to be the TOP in national rankings of cancer research institutes, regarding new therapies targeting lung cancer. Will you help Winship Cancer Institute RISE UP to the top!?  You can be part of the change and contribute to the Cabral Fund to help put an end to this disease that took Cabral’s young life less than 16 months ago. I’ve already raised $6100 so far in less than 2 months.


Special thanks to the Atlanta Falcons, Astra Zeneca, Wilmot Family, and all of our Team Draft supporters for helping make this event possible.

Donate now to Support the National Campaign to Change the Face of Lung Cancer!