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Our Story

About the Pappageorgas family

On January 19th, 2000, Chris and Lori Pappageorgas received the worst news any parent could get from Stanford Hospital.  Their oldest son, Nick, was diagnosed with Cystic Fibrosis (CF), a terminal disease.  Exactly one month later, their daughter Melissa was also diagnosed with this debilitating illness.  At the time, Nick was 16 years old, and Melissa was 14.  At the time, the mean life expectancy for an individual with CF was 26 years.  The news that their children's lives could be more than half over was devastating.  How could this be?  

After diagnosis, Nick and Melissa were both put on an extensive respiratory therapy program as well as several prescription medications and told to go back to their regular routine at home.  The next few years flew by.  Nick had been accepted to the University of Southern California in Los Angeles.  The following year, Melissa was also accepted to USC, and off she went. They both graduated from USC in 4 years, even though they had several hospital stays at USC Medical Center.

Chris and Lori began attending CF fundraisers while their children were in college.  They began to meet and hear stories of more and more CF patients living into their late twenties and early thirties.  Thanks to improved treatments and respiratory therapies, a large number of adolescent CFers were becoming the first-ever widespread adult CF population.  Along with this new population of young adults with CF came many new challenges and difficulties. The child with CF had several organizations to seek assistance, however since there had never been a need, there weren't any programs available to help an adult with CF.

In 2008 Chris and Lori founded The Living Breath Foundation, which would assist individuals and families in need.  With Nick and Melissa advising the foundation, they created several aid programs to assist CFers to help combat the exorbitant everyday expenses caused by the disease. These programs include financial aid grants, academic scholarships, hospital care packages, medical bills or medical equipment, and double lung transplant aid.


Now in its seventeenth year, the Living Breath Foundation is honored to be able to assist the Cystic Fibrosis community in California and Arizona.  The foundation is proud to work closely with Stanford, UCSF, and USC Cystic Fibrosis clinics.  The Living Breath Foundation continues to play a vital part in advancing the quality of life for CF patients through these aid programs.

The Pappageorgas Family in 2015

The Living Breath Mission Statement

The Living Breath Foundation is a non-profit organization created to help individuals and families with Cystic Fibrosis. 


We award scholarships to qualifying individuals who wish to further their education beyond the high school level. We also assist individuals and families with the added expenses associated with having Cystic Fibrosis, which include the extensive costs of prescription medication and medical equipment. In certain situations, we provide financial assistance for individuals who have prolonged or frequent absences from work.


In addition to providing financial assistance, The Living Breath Foundation plans on producing new and inventive ways to raise awareness about the disease and what it takes to live with the illness.

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