DETROIT (WJBK) - The Detroit Fire Department is enduring another tough loss after a second generation firefighter died on the job after a medical emergency.
Detroit Fire Fighters Association President Mike Nevin says firefighter Michael Lubig was born, bred and raised into his job.
"His father was on the job so he followed in his father's footsteps, so he gave it all he had. He gave every bit of what he had to the fire department," Nevin says. And last Thursday's grueling 24-hour shift, involving three fire emergencies and a medical run, would sadly be Lubig's last. The 47-year-old sergeant suffered an apparent heart attack at Squad 4 on the city's west side.
"He was in the shower and the guys were downstairs having coffee," said Nevin. "They noticed water pouring down the stairs. They ran upstairs and they found Michael unconscious in the bath tub. The firefighters rushed to his aid and doctors at Henry Ford Hospital did all they could, but it wasn't enough.
On Monday his family waited for his father, a retired Detroit firefighter, to drive in from Florida. He made the decision to donate his organs.
"He was a donor so Michael was still saving lives," Nevin said.
Lubig leaves behind a wife, four children and grandchildren - and nearly 20 years of memories with his Detroit fire family. He spent most of his career in the 3rd Battalion, most recently Engine 58 on Detroit's east side. Pictures capture his zest for life.
"He loved rock and roll; he loved Motorhead, heavy metal," said Nevin. "He would go to the Warped Tours, he was a rock 'n roller. Michael was just a free spirit, good guy. He was a carpet layer, he was a handyman, he was a fisherman, a hunter. He was just an all-around good guy. He had a ton of energy, and just a lot of love in his heart. I don't think you'll find anybody who could say a bad word about Michael."
His wife Lisa posted a message on Facebook: "Rest in peace my love. you were my life, my love, my hero. Our DFD family is here for us, as well as our family from far and wide. Nothing can compare to the love, comfort and support they have given and I know will continue to give. I hope you can rest easier knowing they are taking care of us."
We are told he died of a cardiac event, although no official cause of death has been determined. He will be laid to rest Tuesday.