Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Southgate Firefighter Dies After Battle with Cancer

Monica Rath. Southgate Fire Dept. 
SOUTHGATE, Ky. (WKRC) - The firefighter and EMT for the Southgate Volunteer Fire Department battling cancer has passed away. Monica Rath's husband shared the news on March 9. Angela Ingram shared her story the day before.

Monica had been battling cancer since 2014, when she was originally diagnosed. She underwent chemotherapy but the cancer came back in 2015.

Monica has been with the department for 20 years. Her father is a 40 year member of the same department.

Her husband, Steve, had not left her side since Monica's illness. He's a Fort Thomas firefighter and also volunteers in Southgate. People who have known Monica for years say the entire family is focused to helping others. To show their support, the community has been rallying around Monica. A vigil was held on March 8.

According to a gofundme page, Monica spent 30 days in the hospital, racking up high hospital bills.
Article run yesterday:

SOUTHGATE, Ky. (Angela Ingram) - She has dedicated her life to service and now the community is showing its support for a firefighter battling cancer.

Monica Rath is firefighter and Emergency Medical Techician in Northern Kentucky. Rath is known for being a trailblazer in a field dominated by men and for her giving spirit. People who know and love Monica are praying for healing at St. Therese Church. Monica has battled cancer for some time now and they want her well and home with her family.

Rath has spent more than 20 years worker for the Southgate Volunteer Fire Department where John Beatsch is the chief.

"She originally was diagnosed in 2014 and underwent some chemotherapy. She worked through that both with the fire department and the Kentucky firefighters and then in 2015, the cancer came back," Chief Beatsch said.

Her husband, Steve, has not left her side since Monica's illness. He's a Fort Thomas firefighter and also volunteers in Southgate. People who have known Monica for years say the entire family is focused to helping others.

Beatsch said, "Her father, Wayne Watson, joined the fire department 40 years ago or over 40 years. Her brother is a Southgate volunteer and a paid Fort Thomas firefighter."

Family friend Tony Kramer added, "Their whole lives have been dedicated to volunteer service within their city, within their church."

Kramer even credits Monica for saving his wife's life when his wife experienced a medical emergency. The group wants Monica and her family to know that they are not alone along this journey.

"I really probably believe her motto is, 'The price we pay for existence is our service,' and she has paid in service. She has served everybody, everywhere, all the time," said Kramer.

Rath has incurred thousands in medical expenses because of her illness. Friends have started a GoFundMe page on her behalf. There is also a fundraiser so that people can show their support the weekend of March 11. The fundraiser and spaghetti dinner for Rath is Saturday, March 12, at the Southgate Community Center. That's located at 301 West Walnut Street. It starts at 5 p.m. and goes until midnight.

CLICK HERE for the GoFundMe page.

See the Local12 Video here. 

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