Henry T. Fairlie
U.S. Merchant Marine
1942 - 1946
Henry T. (Hank) Fairlie was a life-long Staten Islander, decorated World War ll
veteran, and world traveler. He was a retired structural steel inspector who was known as “the spider” for confidently climbing the steel of the Twin Towers World Trade Center.
He was a third-degree Mason (Tompkins Lodge) and a Shriner (Tall Cedars of Lebanon). In his youth, he received several high diving medals from the Parks Department at Faber Pool, was a drummer in the PAL marching band, a fearless boxer, and an award winning swimmer for the Curtis High School swim team.
At the start of World War II, he attempted to enlist in the Navy but was rejected due to
height restrictions. He then enlisted in the Merchant Marine. Henry earned several medals for his active service in World War II including during Operation ‘Overlord’, the Allied landing on the westernmost beach of Normandy, codenamed Utah Beach, and a critical, logistical role in the Battle of the Bulge. Merchant
mariners were fully involved working with the Armed Guard gun crews, rescuing soldiers from fiery decks below, and often assisting Army doctors. He also saw duty in the South Pacific.
As a lifelong motorcycle enthusiast, in his senior years, Henry traveled solo on his BMW motorcycle and camped throughout the continental US, British Isles, Europe, the Balkans, and Northern Africa. A hard working family man, he was a dedicated husband to his wife, Frances, had great pride in his two daughters, Dawn and Karen, and was an inspiring father-in-law to his son-in-law Joe Locascio. He was the most comical and absolute best grandpa to his grandson Jordan. He is remembered as a multi-talented and
daring adventurer who had a great passion for living, a positive outlook, a vivid sense of
humor, and a deep belief in God.
When asked to summarize his life, he said, “Life was good, I thank God for all my blessings; my lovely daughters, the best wife a man could ever have, the greatest son-in-law, a wonderful grandson, and all of my brothers and sisters.”
His ashes continue to be spread around the world by his daughters in his loving memory.
Sponsored by Dawn Fairlie and Karen Fairlie