Richard Heimler brought both empathy and reality to lung cancer and his diagnosis, connecting to the lung cancer community on a national platform with his prose and poignancy.
He was a sought-after speaker for companies and public venues across the country and made a tremendous impact with his hopeful message. The Rays of Hope Award embodies all that Richard Heimler represented in his journey with lung cancer—leadership in generating awareness and understanding of the disease and sharing compassion that helped many patients and families through their journey.
The award is named after the celebration of the 10thanniversary of his diagnosis when copies of his diagnostic X-rays were painted over by family members with cheerful and hopeful images – turning a negative into a positive. The accompanying video, “Richard’s Rays of Hope” presented an inspirational message, and has been viewed by thousands world-wide on YouTube and Facebook.
Richard was a thirteen year survivor of lung cancer, and resided in Stamford, CT before passing in September 2017.
Along with his involvement with Lung Cancer Alliance, including serving as a member of the Board of Directors, Richard was a community leader in many ways serving for the Northwestern University Alumni Association, Jewish Federation of North Jersey, Hetrick Martin Institute, and so many others. He’s also served as Board Member of the American Cancer Society and Co-Chaired the Ad Program for Gala on behalf of the Human Rights Campaign.