Earlier this month 18 members from Middleton Rural Fire Brigade together with three members from Kemps Creek Rural Fire Brigade received the NSW Premier's Bushfire Emergency Citation for the many hours helping the community during last summer's bushfires.
Middleton members volunteered their time on firegrounds across the state including Kempsey, Tenterfield, Glen Innes, Grafton and Gospers Mountain fire as well as the Green Wattle Creek fire. They also helped with fires in Balmoral, Bundanoon, Wingello, Tumut in the Snowy Mountains and in the Shoalhaven area.
The volunteers were presented the citations by Liverpool mayor Wendy Waller.
"It was an honour to be recognised for our efforts. We are here to help and assist the community," said Middleton Rural Fire Brigade Deputy Captain Chris McGraw.
Mr McGraw, who has been volunteering for six years, encouraged residents to "be prepared" this bushfire season.
"It doesn't matter where you live make sure you discuss what your fire plans are with the family, you may not be at you home, you could be on holidays and something happens in the area you are in, so everyone needs to know what the family plan is," he said. "Prepare your homes by cleaning out your gutters of fallen leaves, cut the long grass on your properties, pick up those fallen branches and dispose of them. Having a clear area between the bush and your property will benefit you."
The Middleton members who received the Premier's Bushfire citation were:
- Captain David Cervelli, Senior Deputy Captain Ronnie McNamara, Deputy Captain Peter Hamori, Deputy Captain Daria Hayes, Deputy Captain Darin Howell, Deputy Captain Chris McGraw and Volunteer Firefighters, Brett Collison, Brad Conole, Lachlan Bates, Stephanie Cervelli, Paul Trama, Shania Trama, Joe Younan, Aidan Kearney, Konrad Janson, Rodney Fenech, Conar McLoughlin, John Turner, Kerry Hammell and Gino Repetto.