National Fallen Firefighters Foundation

Roll of Honor

Age: 44
Year of Death: 2009

Eric A. Tinkham

Do you know your geography? Eric did‚ and he would always ask you‚ ‘What’s the capital of Thailand?’ And you’d better know it.

The shining life of Captain Eric Allan ‘Tink’ Tinkham began on January 9‚ 1965‚ in Rochester‚ Minnesota. Larry and Janice Tinkham brought into this world their first child‚ Eric Allan Tinkham. He soon had a little sister‚ Lynn‚ and a few years later a little brother‚ Thad.

In June 1981‚ Eric and his family moved from the cooler climate of North East to the hot desert of Gilbert‚ Arizona. Enrolling in Gilbert High School‚ he ditched many classes to spend time at the fire station. He received his GED and began working for Rural/Metro Fire Department as a reserve. Eric’s hard work and dedication got him a full-time position on a one-man engine company where he always gave 100%. ‘Tink‚’ as he’s known‚ became well respected with all agencies in the area.

Eric found a new life love in Judy and her 18-month-old daughter‚ Jessica. On June 19‚ 1991‚ Eric and Judy were married. Their family grew‚ with three beautiful girls‚ Taleah in 1993‚ Breahna in 1995‚ and Shania in 1999. Eric always worked hard to provide for his family; they were his number one priority.

Settling in Queen Creek‚ he continued working for Rural/Metro‚ becoming a paramedic‚ then soon being promoted to captain. Eric loved playing practical jokes on everyone; however‚ he always kept his word on what he said‚ especially when he said ‘soul brother‚’ meaning‚ ‘This is the truth‚ my brother.’ Eric always knew how to keep someone laughing even if they were hurting. If he wasn’t making you laugh he was stuffing you with his cooking.

Eric was very active within the community of Queen Creek‚ always supporting the high school sports programs‚ participating in many charity motorcycle rides‚ and helping to start the Queen Creek Firefighters Assistance Fund that would help community members in need after a tragedy‚

In January 2008‚ the little town of Queen Creek would form a new fire department. Eric left his 24 years of service with Rural/Metro behind and was hired as a paramedic captain. With the days of one-man trucks behind him‚ Eric was proud of his four-person crew and new red fire truck. He died doing what he loved to do.

Eric was a very proud husband‚ father‚ son and brother. He took pride in all he did as a firefighter‚ captain and paramedic. Judy said‚ ‘I am so proud and honored at what he did and all he stood for; he was a man’s man. We all loved him and knew him as that wonderful man‚ ‘Tink.’

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  1. I love u and miss u papa

    – Tillya