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  • Writer's pictureThe Hon. Paul Toole MP


Thirty-nine National Emergency Medals, four National Medals and Clasps plus ninety-five RFS Long Service Medals were presented over the weekend at the Chifley Medal Presentation held in Lithgow and Bathurst to well deserving Rural Fire Service volunteers for their dedication to keeping our communities safe.

The National Emergency Medal is reserved only for those who rendered sustained or significant service during nationally significant emergencies in Australia. The recent medal ceremony recognised the outstanding work completed by the RFS in the devastating 2019/2020 fire season.

Teams of volunteers from the Chifley District protected the Bathurst electorate and other parts of the state from the fires of 2019/2020 with some volunteers away for months at a time and others sadly losing their own homes whilst out protecting someone else’s.

The National Medal is Australia’s most awarded civilian medal. Recognising the long and diligent service of RFS members, that help NSW communities during times of crisis. National Medals and Clasps are presented to members of the Service in recognition of their years of diligent service, for members who go above and beyond what is expected of active members within their Brigades.

The long service acknowledgements accumulated to over 600 years of service between twenty-eight volunteers. Kevin Mays from South Bowenfels received an RFS Long Service Medal for 55 years of service as well as William Clark from Capertee and Darcy McCann from Cullen Bullen for over 40 years of service each.

In Bathurst, the long service acknowledgements accumulated to over 1,645 years of service between sixty-one volunteers. Ron Boon received an RFS Long Service Medal for 68 years of service as well as Ken Stapleton for 67 years of service, both from the Burraga brigade. Norma Broomfiled from Yetholme Brigade was recognised for 64 years of service plus Ken Harmer from Perthville Brigade and Ron Pearce from Burraga Brigade for 60 years each.

Member for Bathurst Paul Toole attended the ceremonies to present the medals and congratulate the volunteers.

“It is very rare and special to have such dedicated professionals who frequently give up their own time and livelihoods to help others in times of emergency. You should all be very proud as should your families and communities,” said Mr Toole.

“The 2019/2020 summer was a harrowing fire season and you really rose to the challenge of facing unprecedented fires that tore through the state. We in the community are so grateful that we could call on you and your courage to battle blazes and protect us.”

All recipients are to be commended on their dedication, commitment, and service to the local community. A list of National Emergency Medals recipients follows:

Glen Alice Brigade

- Kyle Butler

- Bruce Butler

- Emil Franssen

- Kathy Grimshaw

- Jason Grimshaw

- Margaret Hart

- John McKay

- Peter Mogg

- Macarthur Munns

- Jason Shaw

Hartley Brigade

- Allison Pilarcik

- Matthew Pilarcik

Lithgow Communications Brigade

- Brigade Captain Brian Quick

- Robert Hopkins

- Karl Kriwanek

- Julia Kirwan

- Peter McDougall

- Colin Symons

- Dianne Van Der Velden

- Ann Williams

Perthville/Georges Plains Brigade

- Lisa Bray

- Peter Harris

- Amanda Peterson

- Brendan Inwood

- Scott James

- Jemma Lawson

- Mark Lawson

- Lyndi Osmond

- Ryan Palmer

- Chris Bateman

Yetholme Brigade

- Tyson Manders (accepted by Tyson’s widow and children)

Chifley Lithgow Team

- Liz Lewis

Gurnang/Porters Retreat Brigade

- Andrew Sterling


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