Cudgegong volunteers' commitment praised


Longstanding volunteers from the Cudgegong District were today honoured by the NSW Rural Fire Service (NSW RFS) for their ongoing commitment to the local community.

Assistant Commissioner Stuart Midgley presented 34 volunteers with Long Service Medals and three volunteers with National Medals during a ceremony held at the Cudgegong Fire Control Centre.

"In total, these 37 medal recipients have accumulated 879 years of service between them," Assistant Commissioner Midgley said.

"Each and every one of these volunteers is worthy of our most sincere thanks and I would like to personally commend them, not only for their commitment to the Service, but also to their community."

Assistant Commissioner Midgley made particular mention of Robert Miller, Mervyn Tobin and Rodney Suttor, who have each been valued members of the Service for more than 50 years respectively.

"Robert Miller joined in 1956 and became the Deputy Captain of the Two Mile Brigade in 1962. He is currently the Captain of that brigade, having held the position for more than eight years," Assistant Commissioner Midgley said.

"Mervyn Tobin also joined in 1956 and quickly became involved with tanker maintenance. He has served as both Captain and Deputy Captain of the Wattle Flat/Sofala Brigade and also held the position of Permit Officer for more than 35 years.

"Rodney Suttor has been a member for five decades and during that time has fought fires both within and outside the district, including several which burned for many days."

Assistant Commissioner Midgley said the 26 brigades in the Cudgegong District respond to a range of bush, grass and house fires, as well as motor vehicle accidents and other emergencies, every year.

"The NSW RFS is at the cutting edge of bush firefighting due to significant improvements in technology, training, equipment and communications, however the real strength of the Service is its people," Assistant Commissioner Midgley said.

"These men and women have been part of the Service during an incredible period of growth and the transformation, the experience and knowledge within their ranks illustrates this.

"All of the volunteers here today have demonstrated an exceptional level of commitment to their community over the years and these medals are just a small token of our appreciation."

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