Wayne Douglas Vetre
1961 - 2019
Wayne Vetre, 57, of Wells, ME, formerly of Guilford, CT, passed away on July 5, 2019 after a courageous battle with cancer.
Wayne was born on December 7, 1961 in New Haven, CT, the son of Sisto Vetre (deceased) and Caroline Hyman of Guilford, CT. He grew up in Guilford and attended Guilford High School and Vinal Regional Vocational Technical School, where he studied carpentry and other trades. He worked as a furniture and cabinet builder/installer, then went on to work as a buyer/manager at Page Hardware in Guilford, CT, then as Assistant Director of Public Works in Guilford, CT. Wayne attended Three Rivers Community College, where he earned credits toward his Associate’s and Bachelor’s Degrees in Fire Technology and Administration.
Wayne started his firefighting career early as a Junior Explorer in Guilford, CT. He served as a Firefighter in East Haven, CT from 1993-2001, and as a Firefighter in Guilford during the same time period. In 2001, he served Guilford as Deputy Fire Marshal, Fire Investigator and Pre-Planner, and in 2005 he became Assistant Chief in Guilford, where he served until 2016. As part of his responsibilities as Assistant Chief, Vetre also served as Deputy Fire Marshal and Deputy Emergency Management Director, and successfully procured grants in the amount of $1.5 million for equipment and eight (8) additional firefighters. In addition, he also served as Shellfish Warden and Fire Service Instructor. During his career, he earned numerous State of CT and FEMA certifications, awards, and commendations, including a Mayoral Commendation from the Town of East Haven, CT for rescue and successful resuscitation of a 15-year old trapped in a second floor fire.
Wayne became Fire Chief in Wells, ME in November of 2016, also serving as Emergency Management Director and Wells Ocean Rescue Director. During his short tenure, he was able to procure three (3) additional fire trucks plus equipment for the Department, one (1) additional firefighter, and worked tirelessly to ensure that the residents of Wells had the best in terms of public safety protection. He contributed greatly to the design, build, and completion of the new Wells Public Safety complex. Wayne was a member of the Maine Fire Chiefs Association and numerous other community associations, including Wells Rotary.
Wayne was a loving husband, father, grandfather, son, brother, uncle and friend. Wayne was known for his kindness, humble demeanor, wealth of knowledge, and his ability to put others before himself. He was a well-respected colleague, mentor, instructor, manager, and Fire Chief.
Wayne was a member of St. David’s Episcopal Church in Kennebunk. He had a passion for the outdoors and enjoyed camping, hiking and fishing, which he shared with and passed down to his children. He enjoyed working on house projects and collecting antiques. Many will remember him for his sense of humor, his admiration for the TV sitcom “Seinfeld”, and his gift of “gab” - Wayne greatly enjoyed telling stories.
Wayne is survived by his wife, Jacklyn A. Belmonte of Wells, ME; mother, Caroline Hyman of Guilford, CT; son Wayne Vetre, Jr. (Victoria Brudz) of Clinton, CT; daughter Stephanie Petrie (Michael) of Aurora, CO; sister Catherine Smith (Bruce) of Wallingford, CT; brother Bruce Vetre (Cybele) of Guilford, CT, grandchildren Bentley and Ivy Petrie, nephew Tobias Smith, niece Amelia Tirado, and his best “bud”, cat Noah. He is also survived by the mother of his children, Theresa Vetre, of Guilford, CT.
Calling hours will be held Thursday, July 11, 2019 from 5:00 – 7:00 PM at Bibber Memorial Chapel, 67 Summer Street, Kennebunk, ME, 04043.
A Celebration of Life will be held 10 AM Friday, July 12, 2019 at St. Mary’s Church, Eldridge Rd, Wells, ME. with Fr. Andrew White of St. David’s Episcopal Church officiating, with Fire fighter honors to follow the service.
Visiting hours will also be held 4 – 7 PM Monday, July 15, 2019 at the Guilford Funeral Home, 115 Church St. Guilford, CT, followed by a Funeral Mass 10 AM Tuesday, July 16, at St. George Catholic Church, 33 Whitefield ST. Guilford, CT, with firefighter honors there.
Anyone wishing to make a memorial donation in Wayne’s name may consider St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital 262 Danny Thomas Place Memphis, TN 38105.
To share a memory or leave a message of condolence, please visit Wayne‘s Book of Memories Page at www.bibberfuneral.com