Town Manager Paul Dawson and Fire Chief Brian Jackvony have announced the line of duty death of Marion Firefighter Thomas Nye.
Nye, age 72, served as a call firefighter with the Marion Fire Department for 45 years, appointed on Jan. 14, 1974. He responded to and helped extinguish a chimney fire on Point Road shortly before 1 p.m. on Tuesday and then returned home. He suffered what is believed to be a cardiac incident and collapsed early Wednesday morning. Nye was transported to Tobey Hospital in Wareham, where he was pronounced dead.
Nye was the husband to Patricia M. (Westgate) and father to two adult sons, Thomas Jr., of Marion and Andrew, of Reading. He also leaves five grandchildren and a great-granddaughter. He was married for 53 years.
He was a Vietnam Veteran and worked as an automotive mechanic in his private and military careers.
"Firefighter Nye was a proud firefighter who served our community with distinction. We are a call fire department, and Firefighter Nye anchored our Station 2 during the day. While many of our younger firefighters are working their private jobs, he was always available when people needed help," Chief Jackvony said. "We are all feeling the loss of our friend and brother firefighter today."
As a retired mechanic, Nye was known to work well his his hands. He was always helping with station maintenance and could be counted on to swing a hammer or paintbrush whenever necessary.
The extended Nye family has a long and proud history of service in the Marion Fire Department and in the town government, boards and committees. Nye's nephew, also named Christopher, serves as a captain on the Marion Fire Department.
"You would be hard pressed to find a Marion resident who has not heard of or know a member of the Nye family," Town Administrator Dawson said. "On behalf of the entire community, I wish to offer my heartfelt sympathy to Firefighter Nye's family and I extend my unending gratitude to the Nye family for their tireless service to Marion."
Arrangements are still being made at this time. A funeral with full fire department and military honors is anticipated, and details about the funeral and visiting hours will be released as soon as they are available.
Statement of the Nye Family:
“The Nye family would like to offer our heartfelt gratitude to everyone at the Marion Fire Department and all of Tom's friends and colleagues in the Marion community and beyond who have offered their condolences and support during this difficult time.
"Tom lived a full, active and proud life. He loved his family endlessly and adored his five grandchildren, Christopher, Hailey, Camryn, Lily and Piper and his great granddaughter Madison. Tom was a gentle soul who would have done anything for those he cared about. He was born and raised in Marion and was part of a proud firefighting tradition in his family. He also served in the Vietnam War and regarded his military service with tremendous pride. We are heartbroken for the loss of a great husband, father, grandfather, uncle, brother and friend whose memory will remain forever in our hearts." — Sincerely, Patricia Westgate Nye and sons Thomas Nye Jr. and Andrew Nye
The Nye family has requested privacy during this difficult time.