A "Gift of Time" for Dave Shapona
By: John Darmanin, Director
Dave Shapona has been a San Francisco Firefighter and member of our Union for 23 years. Three years ago after being diagnosed with brain cancer, Dave was given 6 months to live. Dave’s brain cancer was determined to be “presumptive” under California state law, which means that it is presumed that on the job exposures as a firefighter caused his cancer. After shaking off the immediate shock of the terrible news, Dave opted for delicate brain surgery to fight the battle of his life.

Three years later Dave is still fighting and needs our help. Of course our prayers and emotional support for Dave is important, but his immediate need is ‘time’. Dave has depleted his accumulated vacation and sick pay accounts which now qualifies him for the “Catastrophic Illness Program (CIP) (Dave’s

recipient identification number is 000656). A department-wide email was distributed in late March asking for donations of time from his coworkers. Many have responded but Dave still needs additional hours to make sure he continues to get a full paycheck.

Dave wanted to make sure that any unused hours that are designated for him would be returned to the original donors so they have the option to designate donations of time to other firefighters in the future.

Currently, the way the CIP program works is that if you donate the hours and submit them to payroll for a designated recipient, only that person can use those hours until that person officially retires or returns to work. Then, any unused hours in the recipient’s account automatically go into a “general pool” of unused donated hours that is utilized by the entire City’s workforce. Unfortunately, the CIP program is not set up to return hours to the original donors. To honor Dave’s wishes to return all unused donations of time, I will be accepting all donation forms designated for Dave Shapona and then forwarding only enough donated hours each pay period to ensure that Dave has a full pay check.

After Dave’s retirement or return to work, I will return all the donation forms not processed to the original donors. Remember that your hours will either be used by Dave Shapona or the donation forms will be returned to you.

Please forward your completed CIP Donation Forms to: John Darmanin at Bureau of Fire Prevention (BFP-HQ) through Inter-Office mail or call me at 415-558-3366 and I will make arrangements to pick up your donation forms. Donations must be in units of “8 hours” (i.e., 8, 16, 24, etc.). (Note: If applicable, be sure to have your spouse sign the form in the “SPOUSAL CONSENT” section.)

Donation forms are available from Belinda Chin at the Payroll Office (415-558-3601) at headquarters or John Darmanin at Fire Prevention (415-558-3366). For further information, please contact John Darmanin at 415-558-3366 (24 hours).

Dave wanted me to send his sincere thanks to all of his brothers and sisters in the fire department. He also wanted to extend his special thanks to the civilians at headquarters who have donated time as well, including the HQ’s Building Engineer and civilian Fire Safety Inspectors.


Main Menu