Buncombe fire chief battles bladder cancer - WSIL-TV 3 Southern Illinois

Buncombe fire chief battles bladder cancer

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BUNCOMBE -- It was a diagnosis Buncombe Fire Chief Sue Davis never thought she'd hear.

"It was a shock because I wasn't expecting it at all," Davis said. "We just done tests, biopsies and found out it was cancer."

Davis' son, Tommy Groner, is captain and said since the December diagnosis, the department has only gotten closer.

In Buncombe, fighting fires is a family affair. Of the 11 firefighters, several are family and those who aren't are treated as if they are.

"Everybody's came together," Groner said. "Anything she needs done at the house, here at the department, the crew has really stepped up to do what they need to on fire scenes."

It's not just her department stepping up: Hillview Healthcare in Vienna where she works as a nurse is selling T-shirts as a way to help with Davis' medical bills.

"Just to help others, just like you would hope to be helped if a situation arose like that in your own life. It was just put in my heart to do it," co-worker Sarah Norvell said.

Norvell organized the t-shirt fundraiser at the nursing home.

With her bladder cancer at stage 3, the firefighters know the treatments will be tough and will do everything they can to keep things running smoothly.

"We're going to have to step and do a bunch more, but we can do it," Groner said.

In knowing that, Davis keeps her head held high.

"I'm gonna kick this in the butt, pick up and keep going on," she said.

The fundraiser T-shirts can be purchased by contacting Hillview Healthcare or the Buncombe Fire Department's Facebook page here. Orders must be complete by January 10 and money must be turned in by January 11. 

There will also be a silent auction for Davis' medical expenses at Hillview on January 22 from noon to 7 p.m.

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