Islip, NY – The Town of Islip paid tribute to the memory of its fallen hometown heroes, FDNY Jesse Gerhard and FDNY William Moon, with a cupola lighting ceremony Thursday. The event marks the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation’s “Light the Night for Fallen Firefighters,” which invites fire and community organizations, businesses, landmarks, and homes to light up red on May 4, International Firefighters Day, through May 7, National Fallen Firefighters Memorial Weekend, and honors the sacrifice of America’s fallen fire heroes.

Jesse Gerhard was a 12-year veteran of the Islip Fire Department and a member of the FDNY. On February 15th, 2022, Jesse answered his final call, suddenly passing away while on duty at Ladder 134 just days after battling a 2nd alarm fire. 

Together at the steps of Islip Town Hall stood the Gerhard and Moon families, joined by members of the Islip Fire Department; Islip Town Supervisor Angie Carpenter; Councilmen Jorge Guadrón and John M. Lorenzo, in solemn tribute to the memory and legacy of these fallen heroes.

“The loss of Jesse at just 33 years old shook the Islip community, but we take comfort in knowing Jesse followed his heart, and fulfilled his childhood dream of joining the FDNY in his great-grandfather’s footsteps. Jesse’s commitment to improving the world drove him forward, and he died in service of that cause. For this, we remember his legacy,” said Islip Town Supervisor Angie Carpenter. 

William “Billy” Moon, was a loving father and devoted husband. Billy joined the FDNY in 2002 and served for 20 years with the utmost dedication and skill, serving Ladder 133 in Queens, culminating in his transfer to the prestigious Rescue 2 in Brooklyn. Billy also served as a devoted volunteer with the Islip Fire Department, serving as Chief in 2017.

“Billy’s career and impact as a firefighter for over two decades of service truly defined his legacy as a hero. After his death, that legacy lives on. Billy’s donated organs have saved the lives of five people. Among those are two New York City Fire Fighters, ensuring that his memory will not be forgotten,” said Supervisor Carpenter.

“We continue to grieve the loss of Billy and Jesse: these incredible men and beloved firefighters who served our community with courage and valor. And our hearts and thoughts remain with their families, friends, and colleagues, many of whom are here with us today,” she concluded.