Fla. firefighter-paramedic dies after 2-year battle with cancer

James “Nate” Leonard "was brave in his duties as a firefighter and paramedic, but equally brave as he faced and fought cancer,” said Fire Chief Michael McNally


By Leila Merrill

CORAL SPRINGS, Fla. — Firefighter-paramedic James “Nate” Leonard, 43, died Wednesday after a two-year battle with cancer, the Coral Springs Talk reported. Friends and family were near when he passed.

Leonard joined the Coral Springs Fire Department in 2007 and served most recently at station 95. His accolades include a Unit Citation, three Lifesaving Commendations and a Meritorious Duty Commendation.

“Nate was a true public servant. He was brave in his duties as a firefighter and paramedic, but equally brave as he faced and fought cancer,” said Fire Chief Michael McNally. "While we are heartbroken by his death, our focus is on Nate’s family and providing them with the support and comfort they need as we prepare to lay, Nate, a true hero, to rest.”

Leonard is survived by his wife, parents and sister.

The mayor of Coral Springs, Scott Brook, said, “On behalf of the Coral Springs City Commission, we extend our heartfelt condolences to the Leonard family and his fire family. We offer our unwavering support to his grieving family during this difficult time and will forever honor Nate’s service to our community.”

A funeral Mass is scheduled for Friday in Coral Springs.

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