Tuesday is the one-year anniversary of Patrick Swayze’s death after his very public battle with pancreatic cancer.

Lisa Niemi told People, “”In some ways I look at the anniversary and I think, ‘It’s either going to knock me down or it’s going to make me stronger.” Niemi added “And I know I’m stronger now. The fact that I’ve had some good days definitely gives me hope that I can have more.”

Niemi is now a spokeswoman for the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network and is launching the awareness campaign on the anniversary of his death.

“If Patrick being sick can help somebody else, it’s the highest possible honor I could help him have,” said Niemi.

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