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David’s 60 years to CFA
It was no average start to the Sunbury monthly brigade meeting on Monday 14 August.
Instead of settling in with a cup of tea, members were up standing to celebrate their very special colleague and friend David Collett who has reached a milestone of 60 years of service to CFA.
A parade was held for David by Sunbury members and his wife Jean was also there to celebrate his big achievement.
David’s lifelong friend and fellow Sunbury firey Steven Riley was privileged with the task of presenting David with his 60 year service medal.
“I’ve known David for over 35 years, when I first joined up with Sunbury as a junior I was 11 years old and David was the 1st Lieutenant,” said Steve.
“As his friend it was great for me to be able to present David with his medal.
David joined CFA in 1955 at the Clarkefield Fire Brigade and moved over to Sunbury in 1962.
Since joining the Sunbury brigade, David has held many roles and stepped up as a prominent leader of the brigade including 2nd Lieutenant, 1st Lieutenant, Captain and Deputy Group Officer.
David is a very well-respected member of the brigade, and has helped mentor and train many of those in the brigade today including Steve.
“I remember going to my first ever house fire with David, he really took me under his wing.
“Not only did we combat the fire, but David showed me what to do and what not to do.
“I’ve learnt a lot from David and not just about firefighting but life and people skills.
David has a bit of an unfortunate nick-name but it’s all in good fun for David “Grumpy” Collett.
“David got the nick-name Grumpy about 30 years ago, when he sat down a group of 17 year old up and coming fireys and had a stern chat.
“To this day they all remember the lecture and have a laugh about grumpy Dave.
Fun names aside, Steve speaks kindly of his friend who has always been there to listen.
“David has always been a sounding board for me and others in the brigade.
“He’s got a lot of time for us and our families and he’s always up for a chat.
“He has a wealth of knowledge, he loves passing on everything he knows and the brigade is better for having someone as passionate as David around.