This 28 year old had a cough. 1 day later the doctor said she would soon die.

Emily Bennet Taylor is 28 years old and comes from Los Angeles. She is a young woman who enjoys, and plays, a lot of sport, and spreads the good mood on the playing field as a cheerleader. She and her fiancé Miles have been together since university and live happily together. But when Emily believed that she needed to continually cough due to an “allergy”, the shock was still to come.

Facebook/Emily Bennett Taylor

She thought it was simply an allergy, because those that live a healthy lifestyle, play sport and are still young, never believe something so terrible could happen. But Emily’s cough seemed strange to her. She googled in the internet and then rang her boyfriend: “I think I’ve got lung cancer,” said the convinced non-smoker on the phone. “Why?” Miles asked his fiancé. “Because I looked on the internet.” Miles just laughed: “Get off these sites. You don’t have lung cancer.”


Her cough just wouldn’t get better and finally Emily went to the doctor, convinced that she’d developed an allergy to something. She was thoroughly examined and eventually underwent an xray. The shocking diagnosis: Emily was in the final stages of lung cancer.

Many doctors who discover lung cancer at this advanced stage, avoid operating because the cancer is considered fatal. Therefore the only help is usually palliative medicine, which patients take in the final months before death. These patient can normally not be treated. 

Flickr/Yale Rosen

Emily however, being young and determined simply refused to give up. Lung cancer had not been researched as well as other forms of cancer. Chemotherapy only had a 20 percent chance of success, but Emily wouldn’t give up and wanted to at least try. She also didn’t want to give up on her wish of having children and therefore had 9 of her eggs frozen. 

Youtube/City of Hope

Emily and Miles began to waltz through the scientific literature on lung cancer and sought help with other specialists. Finally she received her eighth treatment of chemotherapy. What doctors considered impossible, finally happened: the chemotherapy started working!

The tumour decreased –  and decreased so much that Emily was able to be operated on. In New York they find Dr. Flores, a doctor who specialised in tumours on the chest. She was willing to operate on Emily. But the intervention would prove difficult because Emily would be losing her entire right lung and part of her diaphragm.

Youtube/City of Hope

Emily became more and more nervous and grating questions bounced around in her mind: “What if I can never be normal again? What if I can’t do things, that normal people can do?” And the particularly worried thought was that she may never be able to conceive children. This is Emily’s greatest wish – to become a mother. 

Miles tried to cheer her up before the big operation: “let’s do all of the things now that you need to two lungs for, and then in a year we can do them all again and then we’ll see how much better you’ve become.” On the 8th of February, Emily was operated on. The surgery went well and as Emily woke, she immediately asked: “Am I cancer free?”

Youtube/Addario Lung Cancer Foundation

Miles instantly looked for the surgeon and asked: “Is she cancer free?” The unbelievable answer: “Yes, she is.”

But life with just one lung is hard. In the first three days, Emily didn’t receive much air. And then she still had to go through another 28 rounds of radiation. But Miles didn’t leave her side, even once. After 6 months, they’d finally finished what at the beginning no doctor had dared to hope: Emily had conquered the cancer and she and Miles can finally begin the family that they so desire.

Facebook/Emily Bennett Taylor

And then a second wonder occurred: doctors tell her that she cannot bear her own children because the hormone fluctuation during pregnancy could have negative side effects on her cancer treatment. Therefore she would need a surrogate mother. While looking for a suitable person, she contacted Angela Stark, a high school friend who had trained in little athletics. “When I read that Emily was looking for a surrogate mother, I knew: this is my chance to help her.” Previously Angela had only been able to helplessly watch as Emily battled her way through the cancer.

Three months later the embryo transfer procedure took place and on September 2 it was clear that Angela Stark was pregnant – with twins!

Youtube/City of Hope

Emily can’t believe that she’S going to be a mother: “I’m so excited that we can fulfil this dream, which continually motivated  me throughout the treatments”, she said through tears. “It means that we simply keep going. Cancer will always be a part of our lives because I want to help other lung cancer patients. This pregnancy means that we’ve come further and we are in a really good place, which seemed so far away.” 

Youtube/Addario Lung Cancer Foundation

Emily’s story proves that you should never give up hope. She fought and won and even managed to become a mother, despite all odds. If you are also impressed by the bravery and strength of this mother, then share her unbelievable story with everyone that you know.