Former officer with cancer fired for using up medical leave?

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Former detective with cancer talked to 3TV

YOUNGTOWN - A former police officer who is battling for his life says he was fired after using up his uppaid medical leave.

For nearly seven years Detective Ed Siemen served and protected the small community of Youngtown but his life and career took a major turn two years ago.

He broke his back while on duty and, while being treated for the injury, doctors discovered a tumor on Siemen's spine. He was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer called Multiple Myeloma but neither the cancer nor his on-duty injury stopped Detective Siemen from going back to work.

In fact, Siemen continued to perform lightduty while going through chemotherapy treatments. In June he applied for a medical retirement and the following month the town placed him on family medical leave. Then last week he received a letter stating that he had used up his leave and was being denied additional leave.

The letter goes on to say that the town could not continue to hold open his position. Detective Siemen was basically fired and his application for medical retirement went nowhere.

He tells 3TV, "If it had been processed I'd have insurance...be retired."

During a news conference Tuesday Youngtown Mayor Mike Levault said they are trying to determine why the Public Safety Retirement System Board did not process the application sooner and said that the necessary steps are now being taken to fix the problem.

Ed is a single father and his friends have set up a bank account for him at any Bank of America.