Marlene Westwick, 62, from Prudhoe, Northumberland

After being told she had COPD five years ago, grandma Marlene knew she had to do something to try and prevent the condition from getting worse. She was given the final push to quit smoking earlier this year when her granddaughter Kaylee-Jo begged her to stop.

She said: “About five years ago I was diagnosed with COPD. I found it really hard to breathe and couldn’t stop coughing. I know that this has been caused by my smoking and that now I have it I will never get better.

“My granddaughter Kaylee-Jo used to hear me coughing and beg me to pack it in. I did cut down a bit - but to be honest I thought ‘well I’m damaged now, so what’s the point?’

“Then, a few months before her tenth birthday, we were sat at home colouring in and Kaylee-Jo said ‘I won’t have a nana by the time I’m 11’. It really got to me, how she must have been thinking about that for a while, so I promised her I’d give it a go.

“I went to the doctor and was referred to my local stop smoking service. There was no pressure, they just told me the facts and said it was up to me.

“I know my COPD will never go away, but I feel so much better now, and stopping smoking will help to make sure it doesn’t get any worse. If it hadn’t been for Kaylee-Jo I might never have quit smoking. I’m proud of myself for quitting, but mostly I’m so grateful to her for helping me.”


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