Hon­ours

Four am­bu­lance of­fi­cers hailed

Narrogin Observer - - Front Page - Kevin Blake

Four Nar­ro­gin lo­cals were hon­oured at the St John Am­bu­lance an­nual awards night, as were 85 other vol­un­teer of­fi­cers from around the State.

Peter Aitchison, Paul Fir­man and Alistair Potts were awarded ser­vice medals and Kevin Blake re­ceived a ser­vice medal first bar.

The ser­vice medal is awarded after 12 years of com­mu­nity ser­vice within St John Am­bu­lance as a vol­un­teer and a bar is awarded for each ad­di­tional five years of com­mu­nity ser­vice.

Mr Aitchison started vol­un­teer­ing in the South Aus­tralian Am­bu­lance Ser­vice in the early 1990s and con­tin­ued there un­til 2003 when he moved to Newde­gate with his fam­ily.

He joined St John Am­bu­lance at the Newde­gate sub­cen­tre in 2004 and served two years there be­fore re­lo­cat­ing to Nar­ro­gin in 2006.

After a short rest pe­riod he joined the Nar­ro­gin sub-cen­tre and has been there ever since.

Mr Aitchison be­lieves volun- teer­ing is the lifeblood of any small com­mu­nity and be­ing a vol­un­teer am­bu­lance of­fi­cer was very re­ward­ing.

Mr Fir­man joined the Nar­ro­gin sub-cen­tre in 2004 be­cause he felt the need to give back to the com­mu­nity for all the sup­port he and his fam­ily had re­ceived in the town.

He en­joys the ca­ma­raderie of fel­low vol­un­teers and fam­ily friend­ships, and is cur­rently a vol­un­teer de­vel­op­ment of­fi­cer where he is in­volved in train­ing fel­low vol­un­teers.

Mr Fir­man is now look­ing at be­com­ing a pa­tient transport of­fi­cer.

Mr Potts started with the Nar­ro­gin sub-cen­tre about the same time as Mr Fir­man and they have been like broth­ers ever since, go­ing on many calls to­gether in their ear­lier years.

Potts’ mo­tive is to help the com­mu­nity’s most vul­ner­a­ble in their hour of need and he en­joys a sense of per­sonal pride in achiev­ing this.

He vol­un­teers sim­ply for the love of it and en­joys the ca­ma­raderie of fel­low vol­un­teers.

Mr Blake started in 1997 with the St John Am­bu­lance op­er­a­tions branch in Melville as a vol­un­teer first aider.

He joined be­cause he al­ways had a con­scious need to help peo­ple.

Mr Blake was ap­pointed as a driver trainer for op­er­a­tions branch ve­hi­cles in 1999.

He moved to Nar­ro­gin and joined the sub-cen­tre in 2004 and spent two years as a vol­un­teer am­bu­lance of­fi­cer be­fore tak­ing a two-year break to travel around Aus­tralia.

When re­turn­ing from his hol­i­day, Blake spent an­other year in Melville then moved to Bun­bury for three years be­fore mov­ing back to Nar­ro­gin with his wife in 2011, re-join­ing the Nar­ro­gin sub-cen­tre where he has been ever since.

Be­tween all four men the awards are rep­re­sen­ta­tive of more than 50 years of vol­un­teer com­mu­nity ser­vice.

Pic­ture: Kevin Blake

Kevin Blake, Alistair Potts, Paul Fir­man and Peter Aitchison were recog­nised at the am­bu­lance awards.

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