An officer hailed as a hero for his actions during the Pulse nightclub shooting in Orlando is being let go just six months before he would have become vested in his pension.
Omar Delgado, 45, a corporal at the Eatonville (FL) Police Department, was one of the first officers at the club in the early hours of June 12, 2016, after a gunman killed 49 people and injured dozens in what was then the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history.
Delgado, who suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder as a result of witnessing the carnage, scoured through bodies that littered the ground and helped survivors get to safety.
The department is terminating Delgado from the force at the end of the month, Eatonville Town Council members confirmed at a meeting late Tuesday. His last day on his $38,500-a-year job is scheduled for Dec. 31.
An extra six months on the job would have allowed Delgado to receive 64% of his salary with benefits for life, the Orlando Sentinel reported . Since he will leave the force before making it to 10 years, he will receive 42% of his earnings, the paper noted.
Delgado, who has mainly worked on desk duty since the attack, said the department told him they needed to replace him because of his PTSD and because they need an additional officer on patrol, a job he can no longer perform. He said he’s ready to leave and focus on his mental health but asked his superiors to wait an additional six months so he can mark 10 years at the department and become vested in his pension, USA Today reports.
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