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Slain cop’s son, female cadet join Cleveland firefighters

January 12, 2019

CLEVELAND (AP) — Cleveland’s newest firefighters include the city’s first female fire cadet hired in three decades and a slain police officer’s son, who got the same badge number his father wore.

Nineteen cadets graduated from training on Friday.

Cadet Justin Leon was pinned with badge number 1338 by his mother, Grace. They say public service and helping people is a legacy he carries on from his father, Cleveland Officer Wayne Leon, who was shot while on patrol in June 2000.

Graduate Lauren Phillips also has family in public service. She is married to a Cleveland firefighter and carried a photo of her firefighter grandfather in her pocket for the day. Phillips says if she can inspire or motivate other women or girls, it’s a bonus to her work.

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