Medical Examiner rules firefighter death heart attack

PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- The State Medical Examiner's Office released the preliminary autopsy results for Portland Fire Department Captain Michael Kucsma Wednesday. The Medical Examiner said Kuscma died from a heart attack while scuba diving Monday.

Firefighters pulled Kucsma's body from the Casco Bay near the Maine Yacht Center Monday where he was diving with five other people. Members of Kucsma's own department responded and tried to resuscitate Kucsma. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

Due to the autopsy findings, both Portland and Gorham Fire Departments are classifying Kucsma's death as a "line of duty death" in the required reports. Kucsma had responded to an emergency call in Gorham earlier in the day. The "line of duty death" classification provides certain benefits to survivors if all criteria is met.

The Fire Department said Captain Kucsma was a decorated 21 year veteran firefighter and an experienced diver. He joined the department in 1993 as a firefighter and became a Captain in 1996. He was also serving as the Deputy Chief at the Gorham Fire Department.

The Portland Fire Department said that relatives and friends of Kucsma and his family are invited to attend a visitation on Friday, June 20 between 4:00 and 8:00 p.m. at Jones, Rich and Hutchins Funeral Home in Portland. An Ecumenical funeral service with honors will be Saturday at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Portland beginning at 10:00 a.m. Instead of flowers, the family requested donations be made in Kucsma's honor to Portland Firefighters Children's Burn Foundation.

Parking Information

Friday - Parking available at Cheverus High School located at 267 Ocean Ave in Portland. Shuttles will provide transportation to and from the funeral home.

Saturday - Parking will be available in the parking lots on either side of Myrtle Street between Cumberland and Congress Street. Shuttles will provide transportation to the Cathedral.


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