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Authorities Remember Philadelphia Firefighter Who Took His Own Life

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – In the wake of the suicide death last week of Philadelphia Firefighter Jack Slivinski, the Firefighter’s Union is sounding the alarm.

The president of the union, Bill Gault, wants to make everyone aware of the stress first responders face and how tragedies like this can be prevented.

Gault says Slivinkski’s death has shaken the entire department.

“We’re 911. We’re the guys you call when it’s an emergency. But sometimes we need help. And sometimes we have to ask for it. We have to be big enough to do that. We have resources. We have to use them.”

Gault says the suicide rate among fire fighters and medics is higher then the general population.

“Right now, I’d like to talk to my membership and I’d like to ask them, look around at your crew. Look at your company. If you see anyone going through any kind of withdrawal, talk to them. We can get someone for them to talk too.”

Gault says 32-year-old Slivinski was a man who dedicated his life to saving others, and he would want first responders to step forward now to get the help he didn’t receive.

Reported by Michelle Durham, KYW Newsradio

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  • Tyred

    You guys (women, too) are the real-life Heroes, but you’re human too! Please don’t feel like you have to be big, stong and “macho” all the time and try to supress things that are bothering you!! You see all kinds of “stuff” on the job, some of it can be pretty ugly, and you also have personal lives. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with getting help when things are bothering you!! I have. Talking them out with someone is the best place to start on the road to resololving them.

    Thanks for your service to our communities!

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