Roanoke County firefighter named Workplace Hero for organizing cancer symposium

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ROANOKE COUNTY (WSLS 10) - The 2017 Red Cross Workplace Hero is a firefighter working to save his current and future coworker's lives.

Lt. Greg Sazonov is hoping to help reverse a growing national trend among those on the front lines of emergencies. Numerous local firefighters have followed that trend and been diagnosed with cancer.

Sazonov is raising awareness about the burning materials and products first responders are now fighting.

In the fall of 2016, he helped organize the first ever cancer symposium for fire departments across Virginia.

"It was high time we did that. It was getting education out to our people. I know that I have learned a lot and I've felt like most other folks if they know something they will change their behavior, hopefully changing their behavior will result in a healthier retirement and career," Sazonov explained.

The departments came together to share ideas about keeping gear clean, not cross contaminating vehicles, and simple habit changes that can reduce exposure to hazardous materials.

If you would like to attend the Red Cross Celebration of Heroes Breakfast it's Tuesday, March 28. Click this link to find out more.

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