March 29, 2018
On Thursday, March 29, 2018, Mayor Bill de Blasio, Fire Commissioner Daniel A. Nigro, FDNY members, U.S. Air National Guard members, family, and friends attended the celebration of life service for U.S. Air Force Major and FDNY Fire Marshal Christopher T. “Tripp” Zanetis at Washington Square Park and New York University.
“Today, we celebrate the best of the best, Tripp’s inspiring life will be remembered across the globe, from Carmel, Indiana to Anbar Province, Iraq,” said Mayor de Blasio. “But we’re proud to say, Tripp was a New Yorker and like so many Tripp came here to find himself but also to be himself.”
“Tripp was brave in every aspect of his life, and when it came to training, education and preparation…he was on a level most of can only dream about,” said Fire Commissioner Nigro. “With such incredible mental and physical ability, and raw determination, Tripp could have done anything in life, but what he chose was to be one of us and he chose the FDNY, and we are so much better because he did.”
Fire Marshal Zanetis died on March 15 in an Air Force helicopter crash in Iraq. He was on military leave from the Department, and died alongside FDNY Lt. Christopher Raguso and five other military service members, while supporting Operation Inherent Resolve. Fire Marshal Zanetis and Lt. Raguso were assigned to the 106th Rescue Wing at the Francis S. Gabreski Air National Guard Base in New York.
Fire Marshal Zanetis was appointed Firefighter in September of 2004 and assigned to Engine Company 28 on the Lower East Side of Manhattan. In 2007 he transferred to Ladder Company 11, located in the same firehouse. In April, 2013, he was promoted to Fire Marshal and assigned to the Bureau of Fire Investigation’s Citywide South in Brooklyn. In 2014, he was recognized for his bravery as part of an investigative unit. Fire Marshal Zanetis is the 1,149th member of the Department to make the Supreme Sacrifice in the line-of-duty.
“To the Zanetis family, you raised one of the most talented and interesting people I have ever met. Tripp was truly one of a kind. He could have been anything he wanted, and done anything he wanted in life, and he chose to serve, protect, and give back all the time,” said FDNY Supervising Fire Marshal Tom Sabella
Currently, 62 FDNY personnel are on extended military orders in the branches of the United States Armed Forces, serving around the world. There are more than 1400 FDNY members who are military reservists or veterans.
Fire Marshal Zanetis is survived by his parents, Sarah and John M. Zanetis; grandmother, Joyce Galbreath; sisters, Angela Zanetis and Britt Zanetis.
For photos of the celebration of life for U.S. Air Force Major and Fire Marshal Christopher "Tripp" Zanetis, click here.
For the recorded procession and military honors at Washington Square Park, click here.
For the recorded livestream of the celebration of life at New York University, click here.