Fundraiser in memory of our forefather, Lawrence Matz

Twelve years ago, Gloria Matz lost her husband and best friend, Lawrence, to pulmonary fibrosis at the too-young age of 58, just 2 years after diagnosis. 

Lawrence was diagnosed with pulmonary fibrosis in 2009.  During his illness, he built up a strong bond of mutual respect with his consultant, Jo Porter, and wanted to help with her passion of creating a charity for research into pulmonary fibrosis.  During 2010, he regularly met with the Breathing Matters’ strategy and build team to give his help and advice; and he and his wife, Gloria, attended the Breathing Matters launch in January 2011.

Unfortunately, having been relatively stable for nearly 2 years, Lawrence started to decline very quickly and, in July 2011, Lawrence was needing oxygen 24 hours a day. He was accepted on to the urgent transplant list, but very sadly, a transplant did not become available in time – 6 weeks later, Lawrence died. 

Jo and the Breathing Matters team promised to fight on towards a cure for this cruel disease.

Over the next few years, Lawrence’s loving family and friends raised £45K for Breathing Matters in his memory, and this initiated our fundraising effort towards that promised cure.  One of the main fundraisers, Peter Tenenbaum, one of his best friends, cycled 1000 miles from London to Barcelona. 

Money raised funded the Lawrence Matz Clinical Research Fellow who went on to develop a pioneering cryoscopic lung biopsy service; a much-needed alternative than obtaining diagnostic biopsies through surgery. This was a first in the UK and leveraged a further £300,000 for research in this area.

Peter vowed that, if a cure had not been found in 10 years, he would do another hare-brained cycle to help boost Breathing Matters’ research.  This October (a little later than planned due to the pandemic), Peter is cycling 1,135 miles from London to Valencia – this is self-funded, and money raised in Lawrence’s memory will go towards pulmonary fibrosis research.

At 74 years of age, Peter is more than a decade older and not as spritely as he was the first time and so this is a massive deal for him, but his determination is stronger than ever and he is putting in the hundreds of miles training needed to get himself to Valencia. [The training has not been without incident, including bike thefts and accidents!!!]  He is hoping that this will inspire donations in line with the amount of effort and training required to accomplish the journey. 

Could you help?
It would be amazing if each one of you could donate a minimum of £5 each towards Peter’s mammoth bike ride on Gloria’s donation page in memory of Breathing Matters’ forefather, Lawrence Matz. Thank you! 


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