Obituary: Henry Trettin

Henry Trettin
Henry Trettin
Provided Photo

December 8, 1930 – February 25, 2021

Henry Trettin died surrounded by his family on February 25, 2021, shortly after celebrating his 90th birthday. He was born in New York City on December 8, 1930 to German immigrants Heinz and Hilda Trettin and was their only child. Henry was an early graduate of the High School of Art and Design (formerly the School of Industrial Art) in New York City. For over 50 years, he was a major influence in the film and television commercial industries as a Director / Cameraman (his preferred title). Henry won numerous Clio and other prestigious awards in recognition of his creative excellence in advertising, design, and communication. Among those he touched through his work and kindness were astronauts, major celebrities, lions of the industry, and countless crew people, many of whom spent their entire careers by his side. He was a great mentor and regularly described as a uniquely generous, loyal, and trustworthy man. Henry was a pioneer in the now iconic use of the helicopter to capture dynamic and exciting running footage for car commercials, going so far as to hang out the side of the helo, connected only by his belt, holding a camera to get the best shot. His gifted eye was widely known to reveal unexpected angles and magnificent lighting. Bob Giraldi once called Henry “long, lean, and talented.” Whenever he walked into a room, his elegant presence made everyone pay attention. His greatness was immediately palpable. Henry is survived by his wife and love of 50 years Lana, his daughters Colette, Shanthi, Prema, and Ananda, his eight grandchildren, his dogs Happy and Sweetie, and the many people he inspired. Donations can be made in his name to the Motion Picture Television Fund. In lieu of a funeral, a private celebration of his life will occur when his family can all be together.