St. Louis City firefighter battling cancer receives special retirement gift from crew

Marnell Griffin, a former fire fighter, is now fighting cancer. (Credit: STL Fire Department)

A retired St. Louis City fire fighter battled fires for 22 years and now is fighting his own battle with cancer.

Marnell Griffin's crew surprised him on Christmas Eve with a special gift for his dedication and service.

"He has always been a fantastic fire fighter, one of the guys willing to do anything anytime we asked him. So that's just a little show of appreciation for his service, we are going to present him with one of our axes," said St. Louis City Fire Chief Dennis Jenkerson.

Griffin is battling colon cancer. Cancer is something Jenkerson said is all too common for fire fighters.

"Cancer in fire fighters is greater than a normal individual. We deal with it regularly," Jenkerson said.

Griffin said he is touched by the gesture made today by his former crew. A crew he said he always looks back on with fond memories.

"I really appreciate it guys. You fellas made the job really easy. You never know what you were stepping into when you stepped in that door, what you were going to do that day," he said.

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