In 2001, at the age of 40, Terrie was diagnosed with oral cancer, and later that same year, with throat cancer. Doctors informed her that they would need to remove her larynx. It was then that she quit smoking for good. In these commercials and extended videos, Terrie tells her story.
Terrie Don't Smoke Ad
Smoking gave Terrie cancer at age 40. In this TV commercial, she speaks from a hospital bed. She shares a simple message: "Don’t smoke. And if you do smoke, quit. Keep trying until you succeed." Terrie died shortly after filming this TV ad. She was 53.
Terrie Surgeon General Ad
When Terrie was a child, doctors first linked smoking with cancer. As a teen, Terrie started smoking. As she grew older, smoking was linked to more and more diseases. At age 40, Terrie got cancer. In this TV ad, photos of Terrie put a human face on the millions killed by smoking.
Terrie: Teenager Ad
Terrie started smoking in high school to look cool. Soon, cigarettes became her constant companion. Then at age 40, Terrie got cancer from smoking and started years of medical treatments. Shortly before her death, she talked about the heartache of seeing teenagers smoking.
Terrie’s Voice Tip Ad
Terrie had cancer as a result of smoking. In a 2012 Tips From Former Smokers® TV commercial, Terrie showed us how she got ready for her day. In this video, Terrie shares that the only voice her grandson ever heard was an artificial one. He was born after doctors removed her larynx. Her tip to smokers is to “make a video or recording of yourself reading a children’s storybook and singing a lullaby—before smoking affects your health.”
Terrie: Little Things I Miss
Terrie got shocking news when she was 40. She had cancer from smoking cigarettes. Rather than retreat, Terrie shared her struggles with the world. In this video, Terrie talks about little things she missed because of mouth and throat surgeries–like cooing to a baby. Terrie died of cancer from smoking at age 53.
Terrie: "Terrie, What Are You Doing?"
Terrie smoked her first cigarette at 13. In 2000, she found a sore in her mouth that was diagnosed as oral cancer. Later she found out she had throat cancer. Terrie talks about getting home from the hospital after having surgery and her first realization that she had to quit smoking. She picked up a cigarette, put it in her mouth, and "for the first time, I looked at myself in the mirror, and I thought, 'Terrie, what are you doing?'"
Terrie's Tip Ad
Smoking causes cancer. In this TV commercial for CDC's Tips From Former Smokers campaign, Terrie talks about how she gets ready for the day after the effects of treatments for throat cancer caused her to lose her teeth and hair, and to have a laryngecotomy.
Terrie, diagnosed with throat and oral cancer, describes how her addiction to tobacco and cigarettes had her smoking right up to the front door of the hospital the day of her surgery, and what finally made her quit. This video is part of CDC's Tips From Former Smokers campaign.
- Page last reviewed: January 24, 2017
- Page last updated: August 1, 2017
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