VIDEO: It's no secret that being a firefighter comes with a certain set of dangers. But for many firefighters, the dangers of the job don't extinguish when the fires do. Max Moya has been with Albuquerque Fire Rescue for 15 years now. He has been in remission for two years after being diagnosed with cancer in 2016. "It kind of didn't really set in until the doctor told me that I'm going to have to do chemo," Moya said. "That's when it really set in because I knew it wasn't going to be fun." Moya says right now getting cancer as a firefighter is a matter of if, not when.
"We're exposed to a lot of harmful chemicals, the new age of products are synthetics and the off gas is very harmful gases," he said. Moya was the first firefighter with AFR to fall under New Mexico’s presumptive cause, which means he didn’t have to foot the bill for his medical expenses. He also still got paid while he was fighting his cancer.