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Mount Taylor awards dinner
Mount Taylor Fire Brigade award dinner was held at the Bairnsdale Sporting and Convention Centre last Saturday night.
By Geoff Crane
The brigade hadn't had a function like this for a number of years and had a staggering 1150 years of service medals to give out to members.
Brigade 2nd lieutenant and MC for the night, Geoff Crane, said it was a great night and a worthy reward for the tireless work our volunteer members do. He also acknowledged brigade members' partners and family. The crucial role they play in supporting members often goes unnoticed and unappreciated.
Geoff then proposed a toast to all the partners, family members and friends who support our volunteers.
The evening was attended by CFA Acting Assistant Chief Officer Bryan Russell, CFA Acting Operations Manager Glenn Harrap and Operations Officer Miles Malcom
as well as local dignitaries, CFA and DELWP staff, neighbouring brigades and, of course, the brigade members, partners and family.
Lt Crane said also said that as a volunteer organisation it was nice to see our members receive recognition for the tireless work they do, not only in fighting fires but also a lot of other roles in protecting our local communities.
The night started with a speech from Acting Assistant Chief Officer Bryan Russell, followed by Brigade Captain Ken Stuart and then local Member of Parliament Tim Bull.
It was then followed by the presentation of 5-year awards to brigade members Lieutenant Chris Nichols, Firefighters Brea Nichols, Katrina Crane, Casey Crane, Kerry Baud and Jess Crane. They were followed by the 10-year service medals awarded to brigade Community Safety Adviser Margie Stuart, Brigade Apparatus Officer Gavin Lind, Firefighters Jess Nichols and Lieutenant Geoff Crane.
15-year awards were then presented to Firefighters Des Pendergast, Kelly Stewart, Matt Lind, Erika Lind and Paul Gunther.
20-year awards were presented to the Brigade Secretary Heather Stuart.
25-year awards to Gilbert Rothe and Glenda Lind.
30-year awards to firefighters Paul Garro, Leigh Thompson, John Reid and Brigade Treasurer Peter Burer.
35-year awards to Comms Officer Paula Stuart, Lieutenant Don Roderick and Harold Coverdale.
40-year awards to Brigade President Kel Waites, Stuart Baud, Laurie Lind and Ron Cornall. Rex Jemmeson
45-year awards to Newton Stephenson and Phil Lind.
50-year award to Captain Ken Stuart.
55-year award to John Sykes and David Hine.
60-year award to Allan Stuart OAM.
After the service medals were presented, the brigade issued two Life Memberships to Captain Ken Stuart for his 50 years of service to the brigade and to Brigade Comms Officer Paula Stuart for her 35 years of service.
Then brigade member Erika Lind welcomed back to the stage the members of the Stuart Family to congratulate them on 175 years on combined service to Mount Taylor Fire Brigade.
The tireless work you have done and are still doing for the brigade and local community over the years has been recognised and it is with great pleasure that we dedicated our newest award after the Stuarts. After consultation with brigade members and executives, the committee decided that this new brigade award would be called the Mount Taylor Fire Brigade Stuart Family Firefighter of The Year award.
The inaugural winner of the Mount Taylor Fire Brigade Stuart Family Firefighter of the Year award was presented to Lieutenant Geoff Crane. Acting Assistant Chief Officer Bryan Russell then presented Erika Lind with her very overdue National Emergency Medal for outstanding service at the 2009 Black Saturday Fires.
It was a great night and to finish the night Lt Crane thanked everybody for their attendance, especially the dignitaries and guests, and congratulated and thanked the brigade members for the tireless work they do for their community.
Photos courtesy of Bairnsdale Advertiser