By Karla Ray, WFTV
The widow of a Winter Park (Fla.) firefighter and EMS captain, who died of an overdose after hiding a secret addiction, is calling for more mental health screenings for first responders.
Channel 9 investigative reporter Karla Ray first exposed the lack of systems in place to prevent Winter Park fire Capt. A.J. Isaacs from stealing hundreds of vials of painkillers, which were meant to treat patients in the back of an ambulance. The man’s widow said the addiction was spurred by trauma on the job.
When 9 Investigates first aired a story about the man’s death a year ago, it was the first time his wife had heard anything about the years of stealing drugs, which would lead to his overdose. She told investigators at that time she believed he was suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder, and now she wants to see other first responders screened regularly for mental trauma.
There are reminders all around the Audubon Park home of the life of service Isaacs lived.
“There was so much more to him than just the struggles he faced,” Heather Isaacs said of her late husband. “He did care for the people who worked with him and worked for him.”
Read the full story here.