NH Gov. Chris Sununu Signs Firefighter Cancer Treatment Bill Into Law - NECN
New Hampshire

New Hampshire

The latest news from around the state

NH Gov. Chris Sununu Signs Firefighter Cancer Treatment Bill Into Law



    NH Approves Bill Funding Firefighter Cancer Treatment

    New Hampshire Gov. Chris Sununu signed a bill into law that will provide funding to help firefighters diagnosed with cancer.

    (Published Tuesday, July 10, 2018)

    A bill nearly three decades in the making was signed Tuesday by New Hampshire Gov. Chris Sununu. The new law will provide funding for firefighters who are diagnosed with cancer.

    The governor chose to sign the bill in Portsmouth because about six years ago, the department lost two of their firefighters to cancer.

    It was May of 2012 when Diane Hartford last hugged her son.

    "I miss my talks with Jeff, I just miss seeing him," Hartford said through tears on Tuesday.

    Boy Gets Hug From Trump at Florence Aid Event

    [NATL] Boy Gets Hug From Trump at Florence Aid Event

    While handing out meals to Hurricane Florence victims in New Bern, North Carolina, President Donald Trump got a special request — a hug from a young boy who was helping out. Trump obliged

    (Published Wednesday, Sept. 19, 2018)

    Portsmouth firefighter Jeff Bokum was only 39 when he lost his battle with cancer.

    "He died loving what he did," Hartford said.

    Just six months before Bokum's death, cancer took the life of 40-year-old Sarah Fox. She was a mom of four-year-old twins and a veteran Portsmouth firefighter.

    "It was tough for everybody here," said Lt. Russ Osgood.

    He says the department did everything it could to raise money for both families because under New Hampshire law, there was no help for firefighters diagnosed with occupational cancer.

    They raised about $50,000 selling pink ribbon helmet decals to firefighters across the state.

    Cancer Patient's Christmas Decorations Vandalized

    [NATL] Cancer Patient's Christmas Decorations Vandalized

    Neighbors in Colerain Township, Ohio, rallied to help when someone slashed the Christmas decorations of a 2-year-old with terminal cancer.

    (Published Thursday, Sept. 20, 2018)

    "The guys did everything they could to help during their battles," Osgood said.

    On Tuesday, both families stood behind Sununu as he signed a bill into law funding cancer treatments for firefighters through worker's compensation.

    "It's just nice to know that out of something so tragic, something good comes from it," said Fox's brother, Jonathan Cripps.

    Studies show that firefighters are at a nine percent greater risk of being diagnosed with cancer than the general public.

    "It has been a matter of 'when' and not 'if' a firefighter will receive a diagnosis," said Paul Parisi, chief of the Salem Fire Department in New Hampshire.

    Jeff Bokum's mom is hopeful her son's legacy of helping others will now live on through this new legislation.

    Koreas Strike Nuclear Site Deal, With US Condition

    [NATL] North, South Korea Strike Nuclear Site Deal, With US Condition

    North and South Korea reached a deal to shut down North Korea’s main nuclear site - on one condition.

    (Published Wednesday, Sept. 19, 2018)

    "It's going to relieve a burden for a lot of families and I know my Jeff is here and very happy," Hartford said.

    New Hampshire follows 40 other states in the U.S. that have similar laws on the books. Massachusetts is not yet one of them.

    Get the latest from necn anywhere, anytime

    • Download the App

      Available for IOS and Android