“My life and my children’s has forever been changed,” wrote Nanette Russo Ambelas in a public post on Sunday. “I was lucky enough to call you my husband for almost 10 wonderful years.”
The message was shared by 179 other Facebook users.
Ambelas’s husband, Lt. Gordon Matthew Ambelas, was searching for trapped residents in a 19th floor apartment in Williamsburg on Saturday night when the fire flashed over him and trapped him in a bedroom. He was found unconscious and later died at the hospital. A two-day wake will be held in Staten Island on Tuesday and Wednesday, followed by a funeral there on Thursday morning.
In his widow’s message, Nanette thanked him for their children.
“Thank you for giving me two of the most special part of you; Gabriella and Giovanna had the best father in the world,” she wrote.
Ambelas, who went by “Matt,” has been lauded by the city of New York, his colleagues, and friends as an incredibly brave and selfless person. His wife’s message is similarly adoring.
“How do I say goodbye to you Matt; you were my everything and the rock of this family,” wrote Nanette. “My heart will never heal and I will love you forever. I want more time!!!”
She finished the note by bravely promising to forge ahead and raise their children on her own.
“Sleep with the angels baby and we will be together again,” she wrote. “Until then I will raise our girls to make you proud.”