Fallen Firefighters honoured
Two South Australian Country Fire Service (CFS) volunteers were honoured this morning at the inaugural National Memorial Service for Fire and Emergency Services Personnel.
The service, held at Lake Burley Griffin in Canberra, was attended by the families of Andrew Harrison and Brian Johnston who tragically lost their lives this season whilst fighting fires for the CFS.
"It was with great sadness that two of our dedicated volunteers lost their lives at the beginning of this year's Fire Danger Season," said CFS Chief Officer Greg Nettleton who attended the service.
"The Mount Templeton and Millicent Brigades each continue to mourn their loss, but it was particularly touching and poignant that the families of Andrew and Brian could be here today to experience the deep regard and sadness of not only their communities but of the nation, to the loss of their loved ones."
Mr Harrison's wife Kellie and two sons, Thomas and Henry, and Mr Johnston's sons, Daniel and Jeremy, were presented with Australasian Fire and Emergency Service Authorities Council (AFAC) Memorial Medallions by His Excellency General the Honourable Sir Peter Cosgrove, Governor-General of the Commonwealth of Australia. Prime Minister, Tony Abbott also attended the ceremony.
"I hope that in some way the recognition of their loved ones' service give the families some comfort and that they know not only the CFS, but the emergency services sector across the country acknowledges their loss and offers support."
A new CFS appliance participated in a parade of emergency services vehicles marking the first of the annual memorial services.
Emergency Services Minister Tony Piccolo today announced that from next year an annual South Australian Memorial will be held on May 4 – St Florian's Day, the Patron Saint of Firefighters.