Sharon Begley died of complications of lung cancer on Jan. 16, just five days after completing this article. She was a never-smoker.

Breast cancer wouldn’t have surprised her; being among the 1 in 8 women who develop it over their lifetime isn’t statistically improbable. Neither would have colorectal cancer; knowing the risk, Mandi Pike “definitely” planned to have colonoscopies as she grew older.

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