We were delighted to see among this year’s queen’s Birthday Honours recipients the following honourees for services to Fire and Emergency NZ and Community:
- Gary Aitken, a volunteer firefighter of 53 years from Warkworth, has represented the Auckland Provincial Association andbeen heavily involved ina number of local clubs and associations including a role as Justice of the Peace.
- Garth Cowley, a career brigade member since 1976 from Auckland, has given time to supporting sick or injured firefighters and their families, assisted during the tragic Wahine distaster in 1968 and guided blind athletes to complete the New York Marathon.
- Bonnie Dobson, a member of Matata VFB since 1981 and lead of the brigade’s medical first response, has given time to local causes including St John and assistance during civil emergencies.
- Alan Tapp, Milton brigade member for 48 years and Otago/Southland Provincial Association Life Member, has been heavily involved in Lions Club, LandSAR, and local committees.
- David Wight from Whitianga, a Kuaotuna brigade member for 38 years, Search and Reescue Coordinator and local fundraiser.
- A special mention must go to Bryan Styles, Carterton, for services to the United Fire Brigades Association.
This is the first time the United Fire Brigades Association has been directly mentioned and follows nominations made for a number of years for those who represent us.
Bryan, like many of our past presidents, maintains a role and commitment to the UFBA lasting many years beyond the initial tenure. Formerly a member of our Technical Panel, Bryan has provided personal support to local members involved in conflicts as one of our reliable and dedicated advocacy support volunteers. A UFBA Life Member, Bryan is also a Trustee of the UFBA Benevolent Fund which supports firefighters and their families in times of financial hardship.
UFBA CEO Bill Butzbach says, ‘It is in these roles, hidden behind the scenes, where people like Bryan and all the other deserved recipients achieve so much in supporting their communities. It’s crucial that we honour and highlight the often intangible impact their years of devotion brings to people around them, for without them the world would be a bleaker place.’
A very heartfelt congratulations to all recipients from the UFBA.
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