Shining a light
Higher cancer risks for firefighters identified
— Joe Zurolo Sr. is not unlike many of his colleagues in the fire service: he continues to serve his community through the local fire company even after retiring after 36 years as a deputy in the Office of
the Maryland State Fire Marshal.
And he also pays a price for his years of service, now diagnosed with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or COPD.
“It’s a direct result of inhaling a lot of smoke over the years,” Zurolo, 68, said. “As a deputy fire marshal, you’ve got to investigate the fire. You can’t say, ‘Well there’s smoke. I’ll come back.’”
Joe Zurolo, first vice president of Singerly Fire Company and a retired state fire marshal, believes his nearly four decades of service is the reason he is suffering from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease today.