NYC: 9/11 firefighter’s cancers caused by drinking
NEW YORK — New York City is balking at a court order to provide a retired FDNY firefighter wasting away from a 9/11-related cancer with a full disability pension, believing the former smoke eater’s lethal illness is linked to excessive drinking, not his time at ground zero, the New York Daily News has learned.
In 2009, just five years after his retirement, Joe Daly was a burly, bright-eyed, 200-pound Long Island retiree proudly sporting a white horseshoe mustache — a trademark he’s had since his days at Engine 218 in Bushwick, Brooklyn.
A decade later, at 138 pounds, he’s a wisp of his former self as he prepares for another round of chemotherapy to beat back the cancer that’s already ravaged his bladder, liver and colon.
“I’m doing pretty s----y, if you want to know. I’m in a lot of pain, but I get used to it,” Daly, 68, told the Daily News; a hint of frailty breaking through his tough-guy exterior. “I’ve had bladder cancer, liver cancer and a liver transplant. Now I have to go get chemo for colon cancer, but (the doctors) are not sure if I can take it.”
Daly’s cancer has been inextricably linked to his time breathing in the toxins at ground zero following the terror attacks, and he’s already received hundreds of thousands of dollars from the federal 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund to pay for doctor visits and medications, family members said.