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Domenico Melillo, Longtime Goldens Bridge Firefighter, Dies At 83

Domenico "Dominick" Melillo
Domenico "Dominick" Melillo Photo Credit: Contributed

Domenico "Dominick" Melillo, a 38-year veteran of the Goldens Bridge Fire Department whose actions and dedication exemplified what it means to serve community, died on Tuesday, Sept. 26 at his Goldens Bridge home surrounded by loved ones. He was 83.

Described by his peers as one of the most dedicated firemen in the history of the Goldens Bridge Fire Department, Dominick will be remembered as someone who led by example, and for his passion for faith, family, community and the department. He was genuinely committed to helping others in their greatest time of need.

The Fire Department was planning to bestow special “life member” recognition on Dominick to honor his long and active tenure. The recognition will now be presented posthumously to his family in October.

At the time of his death, Dominick was an active member, serving for the past seven years as Lieutenant of the Department’s Fire Police – a specially trained, New York State-certified brigade with police powers that supports efforts at the scenes of all emergencies.

Dominick was a fixture at the scenes of fires, vehicle accidents, and storm-related and other emergencies – among other tasks, providing traffic control and protecting the safety and well-being of the public and Fire Department personnel.

His affection for the Department was second only to his love for family. He combined the two into a family legacy whose pinnacle came in January of 2017, when he experienced his personal dream come true – witnessing his 16-year-old grandson, Brendan, become the third-generation Melillo to be inducted into the Goldens Bridge Fire Department.

His influence on sons Michael, Albert and Robert was profound. Michael is a member and former president of the Department; Albert currently serves as the Department’s Fire Chief, and Robert (Brendan’s father) is an ex-fire chief and currently serves on the Fire District’s Board of Fire Commissioners.

Born on July 17, 1934 in a small town in Italy in the port city of Bari, Dominick, after serving in the Italian military, was assigned to the Polizia Municipale, the municipal police force in Italy, in Venice. It was there that he met and fell in love with an American tourist, Angela Blasetti, his bride of 52 years until her passing in 2013.

After a romantic wedding in Venice, Dominick came to the U.S. for the first time when the couple settled in Angela’s hometown of Yonkers in southern Westchester County – where Dominick enjoyed a career as a machine operator for the Yonkers Department of Education. He later became a naturalized U.S. citizen.

In 1974, he and his wife purchased a house in Goldens Bridge, where they raised their three children. In addition to his service with the Fire Department, Dominick was active with other local organizations, for example, serving as a baseball coach with the local Little League.

Pre-deceased by the former Angela Blasetti, Dominick is survived by son Michael, daughter-in-law Deborah, granddaughter Amanda Turney and grandson-in-law Treavor, grandson Raymond Francis, granddaughter-in-law Jennifer and great-granddaughter Makenzie, and granddaughter Tina Rangel, grandson-in-law Manny and great-granddaughter Cortana; son Albert and daughter-in-law Patty; and son Robert, daughter-in-law Melanie, grandson Brendan and granddaughter Lacey. He is also survived by many extended family members, including four siblings, nieces, nephews and great-nieces/nephews.

A wake will be held on Sunday, Oct. 1, at Clark Associates Funeral Home, 4 Woods Bridge Road in Katonah, with viewing hours 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Monday, Oct. 2, at 10 a.m., at St. Joseph’s Roman Catholic Church, 95 Plum Brook Road in Somers. Interment will follow at Gate of Heaven Cemetery in Hawthorne.

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