Posted on November 8, 2014

“Being a Meso Warrior Takes a Lot of Faith and Hope” – Jill’s Story

Jill VaughnThe Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization (ADAO) mourns the loss of our beloved Mesothelioma Warrior, Jill, who passed away on November 8, 2014, after an over 18-year courageous battle with mesothelioma.

Jill, a wife, mother and grandmother, consoled, encouraged and inspired victims, their family and friends to hold hope and faith close to their hearts. We met after Alan’s diagnosis and instantly became friends.  Jill’s courage and perseverance throughout her illness were an inspiration to many and she received the ADAO Tribute of Inspiration Award in 2005 for her amazing dedication to supporting fellow Mesothelioma Warriors around the world.  In addition to helping mesothelioma patients and care givers, Jill volunteered for MD Anderson Network and Bloc Cancer Center to give support to others with cancer.

Also known as ^j^illypooo, Jill knew the importance of hope and support. She tenderly shared “Being a Meso Warrior Takes a Lot of Faith and Hope” with ADAO.  Jill and Budd attended three ADAO conferences and in 2009 she spoke about “Building Your Resource Community.”  She was so happy to join us in Washington, DC, where she met so many ACOR, ADAO, and Facebook friends in person.

“I silently read the postings in ACOR (The Association of Cancer Online Resources) for several months after my husband died of Meso 11/02,” said one of Jill’s friends when she received the ADAO Tribute. “While I only responded privately to someone if they asked for information that I could provide, I noticed that you were giving people every day a source of hope, humor, information, and friendship.  May you be rewarded in this life for the help and friendship you have brought to others.”

Each year, our community joins in remembering and supporting fellow Mesothelioma Warriors with a candle lighting tradition. In 2009, from Jill’s hospital bed, she asked me to help with the candle lighting. Thanks to Julie Burns, we gathered the names and honored Jill’s tradition and have continued every year.

ADAO grieves with Jill’s family and friends. The loss of Jill to mesothelioma, an entirely preventable and senseless disease, reinforces why we continue our fight for a USA and global asbestos ban.  Jill believed in unity, truth, and justice.  May we remember Jill’s family and friends in our thoughts and prayers as they begin they’re healing.

Jill posted a special saying when a Warrior earned their wings,”Another songbird falls silent on Earth, and in the heavens another star blinks into existence in the evening skies to help light the way for the rest of us.”  Sweet Jill, you will live on in our hearts forever.

With sadness,


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