"I Wish I Was An Actor"- Man With Terminal Lung Cancer Fronts Anti-Smoking Campaign 5 years ago

"I Wish I Was An Actor"- Man With Terminal Lung Cancer Fronts Anti-Smoking Campaign

Gerry Collins, from Greystones in Co Wicklow has been diagnosed with terminal lung cancer.

The former Dublin footballer has joined forces with the HSE for the latest QUIT campaign in a bid to warn others about the dangers of smoking.

In 2011, Gerry was one of three people featured in the QUIT campaign’s films and TV adverts, telling his story of recovery from tobacco-related throat cancer.

On discovering he had terminal lung cancer earlier this year, Gerry contacted the HSE to see if his story could contribute to a new campaign.

Dr. Stephanie O’Keeffe, HSE National Director of Health and Wellbeing, said today at a preview of the adverts: ‘Gerry and his family, having reflected on their previous experience with QUIT and the HSE, have allowed us a window into their family life, and into how they are coping with and reacting to Gerry’s diagnosis.

The first of these new adverts can be viewed below.

Dr. O'Keefe went on to say, "By working with us to create new, hard-hitting TV commercials; discussing his smoking, his illness, his expected death and the anticipated loss to his family; Gerry hopes to inspire other people to quit smoking and help them to avoid the pain of illness and premature separation from their loved ones.’

Two of Gerry's children and the filmed the below ad in 2011 detailing his battle with throat cancer.

Gerry has explained why he is involved with QUIT: ‘There were three reasons I decided I wanted to do this – firstly it was for myself, a positive thing for me to invest my energy in while dealing with my cancer.

Secondly, I thought it would be good for my family, creating something powerful and meaningful for my kids to look back on.

And finally, if even one person stops smoking because of what we’ve done, then it will all be worth it for me’.