The Thomas Willett was a fireboat operated by the FDNY. She was launched in 1908 and retired in 1951. She was built as a steam-engine powered vessel with coal-fired boilers. She was converted to oil-fired boilers in 1926.
On August 14, 1927, a tugboat of the New York, New Haven and Hartford Railroad, towing two barges of railway rolling stock, collided with a train of rock barges towed by the Henry F. Wills. The Thomas Willett responded, when one barge was sunk and others damaged, saving their crew.
The crew of the fireboat Thomas F. Willett rescued Captain John Webber, 50 years old, and his wife, Dorothy, from the sinking rock barge Moonstone, which was rammed off the Statue of Liberty early yesterday morning, and eighteen men and women, captains and their wives from eight other barges which were cut adrift but were undamaged.