Wrongfully terminated firefighter locked in legal battle over ba - KMOV.com

Wrongfully terminated firefighter locked in legal battle over back pay

Posted: Updated:
Former firefighter, Cindy Schuenke, is locked in a legal battle after being injured on the job ten years ago. (Credit: Cindy Schuenke) Former firefighter, Cindy Schuenke, is locked in a legal battle after being injured on the job ten years ago. (Credit: Cindy Schuenke)
ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOV.com) -

A local firefighter's battle to get the money she is owed continues to hit roadblocks. 

Cindy Schuenke lost her job after getting injured fighting a fire a decade ago.

A court ruled she was wrongfully terminated and was owed back pay, but she has yet to see any of that money. 

Schuenke remembers her time as a firefighter fondly

“I miss the comradery, the family that I built here," she said.

It's what has happened since she was forced to leave the department that hurts.

“I have PTSD, a lot of anxiety, the depression comes along with all of this, so anybody that has been on pain medicine, they know what it is like, it is so hard to get out of bed,” Schuenke described. 

Schuenke was fighting a house fire in 2006 when a horrific accident left her badly burned.  Scars serve as a reminder of the over 100 surgeries she's had since. 

“They are ugly,” she said. “I had beautiful skin."

She also takes a list of medications including Oxycodone just to dull the pain.

"I used to go and have fun for Superbowl Sunday, and go camping and fishing. I don't do any of it, I have been hunting in seven years, I haven't done the things I like to do," Schuenke said. 

Schuenke has spent the past few years in a legal battle with the Community Fire Protection District.

She was fired in 2009. 

In 2013, a court ruled that she was wrongfully terminated and awarded her back pay.

A court of appeals reinforced that order. 

However, earlier this month, the Fire Protection District filed paperwork saying it doesn't owe her a dime.

“It is hard for me to comprehend that the people that I trusted and made promises to me in the hospital that they would take care of me and everything else, they didn't do that," said Schuenke.

Schuenke's attorney said they will file an appeal to show contempt of court. 

“What happens when the next woman or man that falls through the floor, are they going to get kicked to the curb?" her attorney said. 

News 4 has reached out to the community fire protection district for comment, but have not heard back.

Copyright 2017 KMOV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved

Watch News 4 Now

Mouse over player for controls · LAUNCH FULL PLAYER

Powered by Frankly