CENTENNIAL, Colo. — South Metro Fire Rescue (SMFR) has announced the line of duty death of firefighter paramedic Anthony Palato.
Palato, known to family and co-workers as Tony, passed away peacefully early Wednesday, said SMFR.
Palato was unexpectedly diagnosed with an occupational cancerous tumor in 2017, and although he went into remission a few years ago, the cancer returned.
Tony was surrounded with a strong support network including his wife, their two daughters and his second family of firefighters, according to SMFR.
Palato began his fire service career with the City of Sheridan Fire Department and later joined the Cunningham Fire Protection District in 2000.
In 2018, Cunningham unified with South Metro Fire Rescue where Tony worked until he medically retired on March 1, 2021.
"As a paramedic for 21 years, there is no doubt that Tony touched many lives and will be remembered as a kind, caring and compassionate person with a true servant’s heart, he will be greatly missed," said a statement from SMFR.
"Effective immediately, flags will be flown at half-staff at all SMFR facilities and badges worn by SMFR personnel will be shrouded until further notice."
A full honors memorial service and fire apparatus procession for Palato will be held Tuesday at 11 a.m.
The memorial service is taking place at Denver First Church at 3800 E. Hampden Ave. in Cherry Hills Village. It is open to the public.
Following the service, an emergency vehicle procession will leave the church and travel through Greenwood Village and Centennial. The procession is expected to begin around 1:15 p.m.
The procession will travel from the church east to Happy Canyon Road, southeast to Monaco Street, south to Belleview Avenue, east to Quebec Street, south to Dry Creek Road and east until it becomes Havana Street, north to Easter Avenue, east to Peoria Street and south until it becomes Broncos Parkway, east to Potomac Street, north to Arapahoe Road, west to Havana Street, north to Belleview Avenue, west to Yosemite Street, and north to Interstate 225.
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