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Temora firefighter recognised in Queen's Birthday Honours

Published: 9th June 2009

Deputy Captain of Temora Fire Brigade, Greg Pickersgill, received the Australian Fire Service Medal (AFSM) in the 2009 Quee's Birthday Honours announced yesterday.

Deputy Captain Pickersgill, who has been a retained (on-call) firefighter with the NSW Fire Brigades (NSWFB) for more than 21 years, was one of five NSWFB officers awarded the AFSM yesterday, one of the highest honours an Australian firefighter can receive.

NSWFB Commissioner Greg Mullins said that since joining in January 1988, Deputy Captain Pickersgill had become a highly-respected member of the NSWFB.

"Deputy Captain Pickersgill has been on on-call firefighter with the NSW Fire Brigades for more than 18 years and was at Coolamon Fire Station before moving to Temora Fire Station," he said.

"Largely due to his open management style and interest in mentoring younger firefighters, the Temora crew is a highly skilled unit ready to respond to any emergency."

Commissioner Mullins said that with Captain Greg Matthews, Deputy Captain Pickersgill had been the driving force behind promoting the NSWFB’s fire safety messages in Temora.

"Through his fundraising efforts and community focus, every householder in Temora was invited to the fire station to receive a free smoke alarm. As a result, more than 400 smoke alarms were provided free of charge," he said.

"A database of elderly residents has also been developed and the firefighters use this information to implement the NSW Fire Brigade's Smoke Alarm Battery Replacement for the Elderly (SABRE) program, changing smoke alarm batteries each year for this at-risk group."

Deputy Captain Pickersgill has also been instrumental in establishing an excellent relationship with the Temora Air Museum. At each air show, a canteen is staffed by firefighters with all proceeds donated to the local community. In recent years Temora Fire Brigade has donated more than $70 000 to local charities.

"Deputy Captain Pickersgill is a worthy recipient of this prestigious award and I thank him for his dedication and commitment to the NSWFB," Commissioner Mullins said.