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The Patty Loveless Interview (Page 1 of 2)

An Interview with Patty Loveless


Gary Barg:  I know that youíve been personally affected by COPDóyour sister, your dad, your friends.  What message would you want to tell our readers about COPD awareness?

Patty Loveless:  I think more than anything that I just would like to tell them that itís the fourth leading cause of death in this country right now and there are possibly 24 million people walking around with it and they donít even know they might have some form of COPD.

COPD stands for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and a lot of people that Iíve been meeting have been coming up and talking to me about the symptoms, like shortness of breath. Iím trying to encourage them to seek treatment if they are at risk and Iím really trying to get them to take the five question screener  and not to be afraid.  Itís a relief when you know what youíve got to deal with.

Gary Barg:  Well, thatís the most fascinating part. There are so many people walking around with it that donít even know thereís a name to what they have and they might be just at the beginning stages of something they need to take control of.

Patty Loveless:  Right.  Exactly.  There are the two forms, of course. I was saying about my sister, who had emphysema and chronic bronchitis.  My sister was an amazing singer and a wonderful dancer.  She won a lot of dance contests; but when it took over her body, she just started deteriorating and nobody knew what it was.  Yes, she did smoke, but the thing of it is, if I had known then what I know now about COPD, I would have encouraged her to seek treatment so that she could have lived longer and be with us longer. At 48, she was way too young to be struggling to walk from her bedroom to her kitchen just to enjoy a cup of coffee or something.  It hurts to see a family member that you used to go shopping with, that you used to dance with, that you used to sing with Ė like that; and she was the one who inspired me to sing.   I miss her. I totally miss her, but I think thatís the reason Iím here to spread the word about it.  And itís just very important.  I donít want to see other people out there lose their family.

Gary Barg:  Is the goal of Drive for COPD to try to get people aware earlier in the process?


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