Dennis Howard Fink
April 27, 1951- July 30, 2022
With more than 32 years of active and reserve service to his credit, Dennis began his distinguished military career in 1969 when he enlisted as a private in the Marine Corps, serving in Vietnam from 1970 to 1971. In 1978, he entered the U.S. Army Reserve as a member of Operational Detachment 131, C Company, 1st BN, 11th Special Forces (Green Beret) Group Airborne, serving on the “A Team.” In 1981, after achieving the enlisted rank of Staff Sergeant (E-6), he received his commission as a Second Lieutenant in the Infantry through Officer Candidate School.
In the years leading up to his retirement from the Army in 2005, Fink served in many countries and capacities around the globe, including tours of duty in Vietnam, Okinawa, Canada, Italy, Korea, Panama, Germany, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Hungary, Guatemala, Egypt, Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, and Japan. In the Infantry, he served in a number of top-level commanding officer roles and in a variety of public affairs capacities. His active duty deployment as a reservist through 2002 included service in such operations as Operation Safe Haven, Operation Joint Endeavor, Operation Open Arms (later known as Provide Refuge), and Operation Enduring Freedom, the global war on terrorism. On September 11, 2001, Colonel Fink, in addition to commanding the 361st Press Camp Headquarters, served as Chief of Public Affairs for the 77th Regional Support Command.
A recipient of many prestigious honors, commendations, and military medals in honor of his extraordinary service, Dennis is also a retired New York City Supervising Fire Marshal starting his 20-year FDNY career at Engine 229/Ladder 146, retired senior security coordinator for the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, and former stuntman. He holds a master’s degree in management, has been the president of Lodge 17 of the NYS Fraternal Order of Police since 1991, and is internationally known for his lifelong interest and expertise in martial arts. Colonel Fink has long taught jujutsu and karate at the New York Seibukan in Forest Hills, holding the grades of Menkyo and 9th Dan respectfully. He taught 15 years of pro bono lessons at the Ridgewood YMCA.
Dennis is survived by his loving wife Sunny; his brother Kenneth; children Kathleen, Christine, and Brian; and grandchildren Julian, Caleb, Hazel, and Eloise