Beachwood fire captain who helped change how OH law treats firefighters with cancer has passed away

Posted at 9:42 PM, May 24, 2017
and last updated 2017-05-25 06:45:32-04

Michael L. Palumbo Jr., the Beachwood fire captain whose advocacy led to the passage of a law that provides special workers' compensation benefits to firefighters battling certain types of cancers, has passed away as a result of his battle with brain cancer.

The law, renamed the Michael Louis Palumbo Jr. Act in Palumbo's honor, was signed by Ohio Governor John Kasich in January after a nearly decade-long legislative fight. 

On Your Side Investigators were the first to sharePalumbo's story in an exclusive investigation broadcast in February 2016. 

Our report revealed Ohio was one of just 16 states that failed to recognize the link between fighting fires and cancer.

After the story aired, Ohio lawmakers passed the proposal to assist firefighters battling cancer by offering workers' compensation and  survivor benefits for their dependents.

Palumbo worked as a captain for the Beachwood Fire Department and was a member of Local 2388 since 1992.

Before joining Beachwood, he also worked for the Willowick Fire Department, the city where he was raised, according to the Ohio Association of Professional Fire Fighters. 

He leaves behind his wife and their five children who are between the ages of 8 to 21.

His family is asking for privacy during this difficult time. Details related to memorial service have yet to be released but will be posted at