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Death Benefit Increased for Fallen Firefighters


BOSTON (AP) — State lawmakers have approved an increase in death benefits provided for the families of firefighters and police officers who die in the line of duty.

The House unanimously approved the bill on Wednesday, one week after Boston firefighters Edward Walsh and Michael Kennedy were killed while battling a blaze in the Back Bay.

Since 1994, the state has paid a $100,000 benefit to the families of public safety officers. The bill — which also needs approval from the Senate — would increase the benefit to $150,000 and would apply to the families of Walsh and Kennedy.

The House also observed a moment of silence for the fallen firefighters.

Walsh’s funeral was held Wednesday in Watertown. Kennedy’s funeral is scheduled for Thursday in the West Roxbury neighborhood.

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