National Fallen Firefighters Foundation

Roll of Honor

Age: 50
Year of Death: 2001

Thomas W. Kelly

Thomas W. Kelly‚ 50‚ firefighter‚ FDNY‚ Ladder 15. Kelly‚ a 17-year veteran‚ spent his entire career with Ladder 15. He was known as Mr. Dependable by his colleagues and often used his experience to mentor young firefighters. A former steamfitter‚ Kelly had helped build the World Trade Center before joining the FDNY. Kelly is survived by his wife and two sons.

Memorial Posts


Memorial Wall

  • (will not be published)

  1. Thomas, I want you to know you are not forgotten. I had the great privilege to climb for you yesterday (9/11/16) at the Denver 9/11 stair climb. Rest easy brother!

    – Ben Ojinaga
  2. Dear Ben,
    Just googled my brother’s name …don’t know why…just thinking about him and
    your message came up.
    Tommy was one of my 5 brothers…two became police a NY City Detective .. the other Lieutenant for the township ..Ridgefield NJ..Tommy a NY City Fireman..and two became businessmen.
    Thank you for honoring Tommy with your climb…I honor him by walking with the fire department every year in the St. Patrick’s Day parade in NYC behind the banner for “The Fallen”.
    I appreciate that someone else ..who never knew my brother remembers his sacrifice and that he is not forgotten.
    All the best to you and all that you hold dear.
    God bless you and thank you,

    – Maureen Kelly Paglia
  3. FF Kelly, thank you for allowing me to climb/run in your honor for the last 4 years. You and I have put in hundreds of flights and hundreds of miles. I was honored to take part in last years Steven Siller Tunnel2Towers 5K in Manhattan.. I stopped by the firehouse and met your co-workers. They were professional and represented the house well. The rig has your name on it, as expected. I asked the Captain if he knew any of your family so I could maybe reach out and see if they needed anything. He didn’t know, which was alright.
    I’m not sure if you were there (although I have a feeling you were) way back in 1996 when ditched my high school class trip and stopped by the firehouse.
    Your story is amazing and I tell it to anyone at these climbs/races that will listen.
    I look forward to climbing, and running, with you in the future.
    Hauser – Charlotte Fire Department- Field Comm Unit.

    – Greg Hauser
  4. Mr. Dependable, I have climbed the past 4 years for a different person each year. All of those were given to me randomly, but this year I chose to climb for someone and that someone is you. You were at the beginning of the World Trade Center and there for the end. You were a brave firefighter that never gave up and I am proud to be able to climb for you in this year’s Oklahoma City 9/11 Memorial Stair Climb. I know that the gesture of climbing in your place will not help your family with the loss of you, but I hope that continuing your legacy gives them pride. It makes me proud knowing that I’m climbing for a legend that never gave up in the most horrifying day of his life. Thank you for the ultimate sacrifice you gave and may we never forget what you did on that day. Rest In Peace brother.

    Jason Garrison
  5. FF Kelly, I was honored to climb in your name at this year’s (2017) 9/11 Memorial Stair Climb in Denver. I appreciate your hard work, dedication, selflessness and sacrifice. God bless you, your family and the rest of your fallen brothers and sisters.

    – Troy Norby
  6. This will be my third year climbing. I will be carrying your picture on my pack as I make the 110 flights in honor of your sacrifice. God speed, brother!

    – Randy Barnes
  7. Thomas,
    This is my first 9/11 climb and am honored to climb in your name in Richmond,Va. Thank you for your service and prayers to your family and your fellow firefighters. Rest In Peace.

    – Michele Beck
  8. The Red Rocks annual stair climb today celebrated its tenth year with participants from 26 states and a climber from Canada. We’re the largest. This morning as the sun touched the underbellies of the clouds to the east I pulled into the parking lot, and about an hour later took your badge out of the box. Attached to my weighted Camelbak, you and your memory bounced against my chest for some 3000+ steps in your honor. As I spoke with military members (I’m a veteran) and men bundled in their bunkers in the hot morning air, I sent you and your family my best. We all did. I did a few extra laps just in case. The best to your family, your brothers and sisters in the departments. Our unending thanks for not only your sacrifice but that of all firefighters who run where nobody else will. And to all the families who also gave, and who miss you still. Thanks to all my fellow climbers this day.

    Julia Hubbel
  9. FF Kelly- It was my honor to climb those 110 flights of stairs at Lambeau Field to let you know that you are remembered and will NEVER be forgotten. Each year I climb, I carry the ID of the hero I climbed for the year before so my thoughts will be with you on every trip.Thank you for your service and thanks and prayers go out to your family. R.I.P.

    – Roxy
  10. I completed the 911 Tower Challenge today in Phoenix, AZ. It was my honor to climb for Thomas. God bless.

    – Jennifer Bingaman
  11. I was honored to walk in your name today in the 2021, 9/11 Memorial Stair Climb in Mason, OH. Thank you for your service and sacrifice.

    – Cara
  12. RIP fellow firefighter, I did my first stair climb this 20 th. anniversary.i am honored to have climbed in remembrance of of you and your bravery..never forgotten, Terry Boerman- firefighter 608..

    – Terry Boerman
  13. I ran in your memory for the Memorial Walk/Run on the 20th anniversary. It was my honor. Thank You

    _ Tracy Huber, Kansas

    – Tracy M Huber
  14. For Thomas’ family. I have known of Thomas ever since his name was posted in those days following 9/11. One of my first officers in the fire service had the same name. So I noted Tom’s name. In a fire house in Alaska, we wrote the company numbers down on a fire department flag as they were found at Ground Zero. I sent for a copper bracelet with his name on it and have worn it every 9/11 for twenty years. As the cards with the names are handed out to be read, I always claim Ladder 15. Here in Fairbanks, Alaska, your brother’s name will be called out along with the rest every year. “Never Forget” isn’t just an old sticker. It’s written on our hearts.

    – Benjamin D Fleagle
  15. Having a drink for you in your honor for your service and dedication. You are not forgotten.

    – David R Kessler
  16. Dear Mr. Kelly,

    I had the opportunity to participate in my first 9/11 stair climb and I was able to honor you with my 110 flights. It was the inaugural event at the Naples Grand Hotel in Naples, FL. There was also a corresponding 50 mile cycle ride. Total participation of your fellow first responders and others numbered in the hundreds, it was quite a turnout to raise money for first responder families and to insure we Never Forget. I plan to participate each year going forward, it was my honor to represent you today.

    – ZK
  17. I was honored to walk in your name on 10/9/22 at Melbourne firefighter stair climb
    Thank you for your service and sacrifice.

    – Jessica burge
  18. FF Kelly, I was honored to climb in your name at this year’s (2023) 9/11 Memorial Stair Climb in Az. You are remembered

    – Jill
  19. Was at the Memorial on Thomas’s birthday and took a picture of his birthday rose. If you want a copy of the picture, please let me know.

    – Elizabeth Schimmel