Wading River’s 20th Street will now have a second name, as the Riverhead Town Board formally voted Tuesday to name it after Thomas Lateulere, a longtime Wading River firefighter and Suffolk County Emergency Medical Services instructor who died in July 2016 at age 52 following a bout with cancer.
Mr. Lateulere’s mother, Joann, and his girlfriend, Raegin Kellerman, were on hand Tuesday to pose for pictures with the new “Thomas Lateulere Street” sign, which will be installed soon. Mr. Lateulere grew up on 20th Street.
The street will also continue to be known as 20th Street, to avoid complications with mail deliveries and residents’ addresses.
“Thomas Lateulere served this community as a dedicated 35-year voluntary member of the Wading River Fire Department and was an emergency medical services educator who is responsible for training thousands of EMTs in Suffolk County,” Supervisor Sean Walter said. “He faithfully performed his duty with the highest level of compassion and professionalism.”
Mr. Lateulere had worked for the county EMS since 1981 and with Stony Brook University Hospital’s critical care transport team since 1988, the supervisor said.
He was considered one of the first paramedics to fly in Suffolk County’s medevac helicopters.
Mr. Lateulere was an ex-chief with the Wading River Fire Department and a commissioner with the Wading River Fire District at the time of his death.
Photo credit: Tim Gannon