Dads in­spire fire­fight­ers

Matamata Chronicle - - Opinion/news - By ABBY BROWN

Award- win­ning Mata­mata fire­fight­ers say they were in­spired to join the bri­gade to follow in their fa­thers’ foot­steps and to give back to their com­mu­nity.

The Mata­mata fire­fighter of the year, Dane Lowe, who has been with the Mata­mata fire bri­gade for 13 years, joined be­cause his dad vol­un­teered for the bri­gade, he said.

Fam­ily con­nec­tions were big mo­ti­va­tions for the other award win­ners.

Dan Hute­son re­ceived two of the five tro­phies up for grabs at the Mata­mata fire ser­vice’s end of year Christ­mas party.

He re­ceived the Bromell Trophy, which is for team player of the year.

‘‘This is for the fire­fighter that has been will­ing to help in all as­pects of bri­gade, not just the fire­fight­ing side, it may in­clude fire safety and in­stalling smoke alarms just to name a few ar­eas,’’ Mata­mata fire chief Kevin Cur­tis said.

Hute­son also re­ceived the Olsen Trophy, which is voted on by bri­gade mem­bers at the Novem­ber meet­ing.

Hute­son said he vol­un­teered to be part of the bri­gade com­ing up two years ago be­cause his dad had been in the fire ser­vice and he also wanted to give back to the com­mu­nity.

The other award win­ners, Daniel El­lis and Ruben Woo­liams, echoed those sen­ti­ments.

El­lis re­ceived the Feek Trophy for his great main­te­nance of his fire ve­hi­cle. Woo­liams gained the Hunter Trophy for attendance at musters and train­ings through­out the year. He has been named fire­fighter of the year in the past and re­ceived the Feek Trophy last year.

Photo: ABBY BROWN

PROUD FIRE­FIGHT­ERS: Mata­mata vol­un­teer fire­fight­ers, from left, Ruben Woo­liams, Daniel El­lis, Dane Lowe and Dan Hute­son with their awards.

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