Celebrating 40 years
Brigade has long history of service
A DISTINGUISHED list of guests gathered with past and present members of the Gregory River Rural Fire Brigade to celebrate 40 years of service to the community.
Among the invited guests was Minister for Agriculture and Fisheries, Leanne Donaldson who addressed the guests and unveiled a memorial plaque rededicating the station to the late Darren Burfitt, who sadly was killed in an accident 20 years ago.
The Burfitt family donated the land on which the fire station is now built.
The minister also presented a National Medal to Grant Davies, of neighbouring Bingera Weir RFB, recognising his long and diligent service protecting life and property.
The brigade welcomed other special guests including RFSQ North Coast regional manager, Peter Hollier, Member for Hinkler Keith Pitt, MP Stephen Bennett, Mayor Jack Dempsey and Deputy Mayor Bill Trevor.
Dorothy Bunn, wife of the late John Bunn, graciously cut the birthday cake and reminisced about the good old days then everyone enjoyed a barbecue lunch and a catch up chat with old and new friends.
With some fresh new members and a dedicated band of “old” members the Gregory River Rural Fire Brigade looks forward to serving the community for many more years to come.
Current brigade chairman, Geoff McCarthy was at the very first meeting where 32 landholders in the Gregory and Elliott River areas met at the late John Cardillo and Mavis’s shed on Foley’s Rd in June 1976. In his address to the audience, Mr McCarthy reminisced by saying the unit was established at Elliott River Bush Fire Brigade to protect newly developing cane lands and property in the area.
John Cardillo was elected the first secretary and held the position for 18-years and Wally McCarthy was elected the first officer. Cliff Vacher, also a founding member, who attended held the positions of fourth officer for six years and as first officer for 12 years.
All the cane farmers paid levies through the sugar mill to fund the Childers brigade.
Geoff acknowledged the former Isis Shire Council, in particular Bill Trevor, and RFSQ for their support with the purchase of our current fire truck in 2000 and construction of a new fire station in 2008 which Isis Shire made possible prior to amalgamation.
CELEBRATION: Gregory River Rural Fire Service celebrate 40 years of service.