Hundreds honor retired Tucson fire captain

Firefighter memorial

TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - Roger Tamietti was larger than life. The retired fire captain was dedicated to his family and fellow firefighters.

His impact on those around him was obvious as hundreds gathered in Sahuarita for his memorial service on Wednesday, Oct. 9.

Tamietti served on the Tucson Fire Department for 32 years; rising through the ranks and retiring as a captain in late 2015. During his service, he was remembered with honor.

Hundreds gathered on Wednesday, Oct. 9 to remember retired Tucson Fire Department Cpt. Roger Tamietti, who died earlier this month.
Hundreds gathered on Wednesday, Oct. 9 to remember retired Tucson Fire Department Cpt. Roger Tamietti, who died earlier this month. (Source: Tucson Fire Department)

Members of the Tucson Fire Department’s Honor Guard carefully and meticulously folded the American flag and presented to his wife of 43 years, Suzi. Followed by the ringing of a bell, explained by Mario Carrasco of the Tucson Fire Department, which signified the sacrifices he made for the department.

"The bell rings three times in memory of and in tribute to his life and service,” Carrasco said.

Tamietti touched the lives of countless people both on and off the job. He was a friend to many, a mentor and a leader to many.

“Roger, as the president of the city’s firefighters union, was very iconic,” said Mike McKendrick of the Greater Tucson Fire Foundation, who worked along Tarmietti for decades. "He was large in stature, he was large of heart. There were many careers that were saved, launched and advanced due to Roger. His down home, folksy demeanor really endeared a lot of people.”

Pallbearers loaded Tamietti’s casket onto the Last Alarm Foundation Fire Truck, reserved for fallen firefighters for their last call. McKendrick says he’ll be missed.

“Roger was a friend. He did a lot for the fire service and a lot for firefighters and today’s gathering is just exemplary of how people thought about Roger,” he said.

Tamietti died on Oct. 2 from complications following a surgery to remove cancer. He was 61. He’s survived by his wife, six children and 19 grandchildren.

He was buried at his family’s ranch cemetery west of Sahuarita.

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