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Shepparton News - - NEWS - By Hay­den Thom­son

Shep­par­ton Fire Bri­gade mem­bers were recog­nised for their con­tri­bu­tions to the CFA at an an­nual pre­sen­ta­tion din­ner at the week­end.

‘‘It’s a night to recog­nise all the mem­bers and their con­tri­bu­tions,’’ CFA Dis­trict 22 op­er­a­tions of­fi­cer Peter Ded­man said.

More than 100 mem­bers, vol­un­teers and their part­ners gath­ered for the event with two lo­cal mem­bers, Ben Lin­nett and Brian O’Ma­hony, recog­nised for their ef­forts dur­ing the Black Satur­day bush­fires.

‘‘We gave out two Na­tional Emer­gency Medals, which is an honour ap­proved by the Queen, to recog­nise sig­nif­i­cant ser­vice in a na­tional emer­gency,’’ Mr Ded­man said.

‘‘The Black Satur­day bush­fires were the big­gest we’ve seen in the his­tory of our na­tion and two mem­bers met the ser­vice cri­te­ria by at­tend­ing.’’

Long-time CFA mem­ber John Cob­bledick was also recog­nised for his 60 years of ser­vice with the CFA, hav­ing joined in 1956.

‘‘I first joined be­cause I was on the farm and young fel­las like us all joined back then,’’ he said.

‘‘I was a vol­un­teer at the Yalca-Yie­lima Fire Bri­gade, be­fore I went to Nathalia for two years.

‘‘I then moved to Shep­par­ton in re­tire­ment and joined the bri­gade there.’’

Mr Cob­bledick said what he loved most about the CFA was the ‘‘com­pan­ion­ship and ca­ma­raderie’’ of fire­fight­ers.

‘‘It feels good to be recog­nised but I would have to say my high­light would just be be­ing around the fel­las,’’ he said.

‘‘These days I don’t do a great deal but it means a lot to me (to be recog­nised).’’

Mr Ded­man said Mr Cob­bledick’s story was an amaz­ing one and said he still came down to the bri­gade on oc­ca­sions and con­trib­uted as a se­nior mem­ber.

‘‘Sixty years just shows his great com­mit­ment to the or­gan­i­sa­tion and it’s great to re­ward him for his ef­forts.’’

Spe­cial recog­ni­tion: Shep­par­ton CFA mem­bers Richard Evans, Adam Her­melin and Ben Lin­nett were recog­nised for their ef­forts this year.

Ef­forts ap­pre­ci­ated: Shep­par­ton CFA women’s aux­il­iary vol­un­teers Loretta Cob­bledick and Caro­line Mans­field.

Hon­oured: Ben Lin­nett and Brian O’Ma­hony were awarded the Na­tional Emer­gency Medal for their work dur­ing the Black Satur­day bush­fires.

Ex­cel­lent con­tri­bu­tion: Shep­par­ton CFA mem­bers who were award re­cip­i­ents at the an­nual pre­sen­ta­tion night, held at the GV Ho­tel in Shep­par­ton.

Spe­cial night: Long-serv­ing CFA mem­ber John Cob­bledick was recog­nised for his ef­forts by Mem­ber for North­ern Vic­to­ria Wendy Lovell.

Cel­e­brat­ing staff: CFA Dis­trict 22 op­er­a­tions of­fi­cer Pete Ded­man spoke at the Shep­par­ton CFA an­nual pre­sen­ta­tion night.

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