During high school, Christine wanted to fit in, so she began smoking at age 16. She became addicted and continued smoking menthol cigarettes for 28 years.
In 2007, at age 44, Christine’s life would change forever. She quit smoking when a biopsy of a growth inside her cheek revealed oral cancer. After 35 radiation treatments and chemotherapy, she seemed to be cured. But the cancer returned in 2008; this time surgery was her only option. Her third bout with oral cancer in 2009 was even more serious. She learned it had spread to her jawbone, classifying it as stage IV. Doctors had to remove half of her jaw.