Tribute to Kate Hodges, Lung Cancer Patient Ambassador

Me te aroha tino nui atu (with deepest sympathy)

We are deeply affected and grieving, because our dear friend, lung cancer patient ambassador, Kate Hodges (50), a devoted wife and mother, died on Wednesday, 1st April, the result of advanced lung cancer. Kate had moved to receive respite care at hospice, the same day as the lock-down and sadly things progressed rapidly. We take some comfort knowing Kate had the love and support of her husband, Andy and their two children, Emily (14) and Tom (12) at her side, when she passed. Given the extraordinary challenges of COVID-19, this is a small blessing.

We want to acknowledge Kate’s incredible leadership and support these past four years, as an ambassador for our cause, which has included the amazing support of her family and friends with raising awareness and funds and informing policy. We feel so privileged she was our friend and colleague.

We most admire how Kate, despite her condition, lived a full and unselfish life, ever considerate of her family and other patients in need. Kate was the real life voice for lung cancer patients for almost four years. She had a warm and kind spirit, she was a well informed advocate, having presented at numerous events, including Parliamentary functions, lung cancer petition, represented NZ at the World Lung Cancer Conference (Japan), a regular on various media, assisted development of patient resources. She also established a lung cancer peer support group and was instrumental in organising the first ever patient support forum.

Kate shone a light on the inequities that exist for lung cancer and she set an example for us all to aspire to. She was the absolute best example of courage and integrity. Her qualities are enduring and we are forever grateful.

The trustees and the small team at Lung Foundation New Zealand send our profound sympathy, our love and support to Kate’s family.

May She Rest In Peace.

Philip Hope
Chief Executive
Lung Foundation New Zealand Inc.