BENSALEM, Pa. (MyFoxPhilly.com) - A story from Bensalem, Pa., will have you shaking your head.
Dan McIntosh was the kind of guy you'd want in your community: a full time paramedic part time police officer and volunteer firefighter.
It was paramedic McIntosh who lost his life back in march 2010, felled by a heart attack while chasing a mentally ill man at the scene of what started as a routine call.
His widow Bethann was told McIntosh died instantly.
Bethann's younger daughter was just a toddler-- too young to understand. Explaining Dan's death to their oldest, was excruciating
Then came the real shock.
As a Bensalem paramedic, McIntosh was technically a contract worker and not a Bensalem employee.
And so, while his widow received a state death benefit, the federal financial help was rejected in a form that arrived months after his death.
With the family breadwinner gone, this family struggles to get by. But Bethann is speaking out to let others know her situation may be rare but it's not unique: first responders who are ineligible for federal death benefits
Bethann McIntosh is just back from Capitol Hill, where she personally lobbied for legislation to close that loophole, and extend federal death benefits to first responders- even if they are contract workers.
The House bill was introduced by Bucks County's Mike Fitzpatrick, and matches a senate version already in the hopper.