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Poolaijelo's worthy life member
In honour of his long and dedicated commitment to CFA and Poolaijelo brigade, Rodger Todd, an original member of the brigade, has been awarded a CFA life membership at the annual post-season meeting of the brigade at the Poolaijelo Hall.
By Captain Ken Frost
He was humble about his time spent with CFA and his presentation with life membership by CFA District 17 Operations Officer Ian Day.
"It blew me away," Rodger said. "Obviously it was unexpected, there were no rumours about it at all.
"Ian stood up at the end and said, 'I have a presentation to make'," Rodger recalled. "Then he started rattling off my history, I knew who he was talking about."
Rodger bought his farm at Poolaijelo in the early 1960s and was initially a member of the Dergholm brigade. In 1972, Poolaijelo had enough interest to form its own brigade and split from Dergholm.
There were over 35 firefighters in the brigade then, which has now dropped to 15 active members. Rodger was appointed the first secretary/treasurer of the brigade; a role he has continued to hold to this day.
"Every farmer naturally joined their local brigade in those days," he said. "There's not that many around these days as a lot of farmers have sold their farms for blue gum plantations and moved on."
Aged 76, Rodger has basically retired as a firefighter, but he continues to make a contribution as the brigade's secretary/treasurer and regularly drives the truck on maintenance runs.
"I think if someone was keen to take over the secretary/treasurer role I wouldn't lose any sleep over stepping down," he concluded.
Photo by Ken Frost:
Rodger being presented with his award by Ian Day