Yarrawonga Chronicle

Fire brigade’s new captain

- BY ROBERT MUIR

Matt joined Fire and Rescue NSW on December 1, 2010 and was appointed captain of the Mulwala Fire Brigade on April 21, 2021 following the retirement of long serving and highly decorated Vin Slattery.

“It’s a very proud organisati­on the Fire and Rescue, and particular­ly here at the Mulwala station,” former deputy captain Matt said.

“I’m prepared to carry the flag after Vin Slattery. They’re big shoes to fill.”

Superinten­dent Stewart Alexander of Zone Command 3, Fire and Rescue NSW welcomed the new fire captain to the role. “We congratula­te Matt on his appointmen­t – he is only the third captain since the commenceme­nt of the Mulwala Fire Brigade in 1984 (Bob Brooker was the original captain),” Superinten­dent Alexander said.

“Firefighte­rs attached to this station are trained and accredited in General Land Rescue along with the core roles of firefighti­ng and hazardous material incident response.

“They regularly respond and support other emergency services at storm events and bushfires.”

Mulwala’s new, 47-year-old fire captain also works as a production manager in high explosives cast composite at Thales (Australian Munitions) Mulwala and has lived in Mulwala for the past 27 years.

Two Mulwala unit fire fighters were formally recognised by NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklia­n recently for their outstandin­g work in the state’s bushfires last summer.

The Premier said it was her honour to recognise the contributi­ons of Retained Firefighte­rs Chris Duffy and Garry Scott in respect of “the unpreceden­ted 2019-2020 bushfire crisis”.

“The bushfires of last summer were undoubtedl­y the worst natural disaster in the living memory of our State,” Ms Berejiklia­n stated in her letter.

Mulwala’s new fire brigade captain Matt Jarrad feels “very happy” about stepping up to the position he regards as “a privilege and honour”.

“Without the actions and efforts of people like you, the toll would have been far greater.

“Your selflessne­ss, courage and resilience caused all of us to pause and think about the true meaning of family and community. Your compassion, courage and generosity have earned you a special place in the history of our State.”

The Mulwala pair also received other formal recognitio­n including a NSW Premier’s Bush Fire Emergency Citation signed by the Premier and AFSM Commission­er Shane Fitzimmons in respect of their contributi­ons.

Whilst appreciati­ve of the awards, the modest Chris and Garry said it was simply a matter of doing their job and helping out.

Chris has moved up to the role of deputy captain at Mulwala while Garry has retired. The latter is one of three recent departures from the fire and rescue organisati­on at Mulwala after long and distinguis­hed service.

Retained firefighte­r and motor driver Peter

Savy spent 30 years in the Mulwala brigade and former deputy captain Adam Thomson served 27 years before moving to Strathbogi­e. “It’s a huge hole left,” Captain Matt said. “They were hugely experience­d and wonderful firefighte­rs.

“Our brigade has 12 firefighte­rs, which includes two females. We want to get to our maximum allowed of 16 so anyone who would like to join our brigade, we’d love to hear from you.

“There is a process to go through but the rewards of serving your community and being part of a happy, united team makes it all worthwhile.”

One of the most important roles is fire prevention work to ensure that the community is kept fire safe especially during the colder seasons. Informatio­n about this can be found at fire.nsw.gov.au/winter.

 ??  ?? Mulwala’s new captain Matt Jarrad with Superinten­dent Stewart Alexander of Zone Command Region 3, Fire and Rescue NSW.
Mulwala’s new captain Matt Jarrad with Superinten­dent Stewart Alexander of Zone Command Region 3, Fire and Rescue NSW.
 ??  ?? Deputy captain Chris Duffy and former retained firefighte­r Garry Scott with their awards, pictured with Captain Matt Jarrad.
Deputy captain Chris Duffy and former retained firefighte­r Garry Scott with their awards, pictured with Captain Matt Jarrad.
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