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Benefit sets to raise money for firefighter with cancer

NEW CARLISLE, Ind. -- A Michiana community is rallying around one of its own. Last August, Chris Antonucci, a volunteer firefighter with the New Carlisle Fire Department, was diagnosed with colon cancer. Over the last few months, he's been fighting it physically, emotionally and financially.

"I had a colonoscopy, and woke up to my wife crying in front of me."

It's a day Chris Antonucci will never forget, the day he was diagnosed with colon cancer.

The fromer New Carlisle Fire Department Chief, and current volunteer, got the bad news last August.

"The chemo has some crazy side effects," Antonucci said. "My major thing is it's making me real tired, and I've been very nauseated, so I have to deal with that every day."

Upset by this, his friends are stepping in to help him.

"It's just a terrible burden," Jamie Middlebrook, Assistant Chief of the New Carlisle Fire Department, said.

He knows first hand what Chris is dealing with. He's a 10-year survivor of leukemia, and said the cost of cancer is easily a few hundred thousand dollars.

"Firefighters have a higher risk of cancer," Middlebrook said. "For every type - skin cancer, colon cancer, leukemia. The rates go up tremendously for each kind."

So now, he and fellow firefighters, are throwing a benefit where they hope folks will show their support.

"For them to do this function for me, I'm pretty speechless about it," Antonucci said.

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