Firefighter gets award for service
A Blenheim firefighter has been awarded a Long Service & Good Conduct Medal for 14 years of service as a volunteer firefighter .
Blenheim station officer Mike Field began his firefighting career in Katikati, Bay of Plenty, after passing firefighters at work on the side of the road.
"I saw them and I thought, ‘I'd like to be part of that'."
As a line faultman, Mr Field had worked with the fire brigade on a few occasions and thought joining up would be a good way to help the community while at the same time becoming a part of it.
After coming to Blenheim for a holiday, Mr Field made the move to Marlborough about seven years ago and works for Marlborough Lines.
He joined the Blenheim fire brigade as soon as he arrived, and not long after became an officer after completing a training course in Australia.
Joining the fire brigade was a good way of getting new mates, he said.
"As soon as I joined the brigade, you become part of the family," he said. "It felt really good."
While some callouts can be ugly, his philosophy is to just get on with the job.
"You tend to block it out and just keep busy and do your work," he said.
One of the most memorable incidents was not long after he had moved to Blenheim and was called out to his first house fire as an officer in Girling Ave.
"We could see the black smoke as we were driving towards it and my mind was just racing," he said.
"It was the first time I was the officer in charge and I had men to keep safe. The adrenaline was flowing."
Half of the house was saved and no-one was hurt, he said.
On Saturday he received a long service and good conduct medal for 14 years' service, after he applied for it more than a year ago.
"I'd been looking forward to it for a while," he said. "It's a good feeling."
His role as a volunteer firefighter has become a passion and he plans on still being involved in 20 years time.
"I'm heading for the gold star [25 years of service]," he said. "Why not? I love it."
3 Year Certificates: Firefighter (FF) Rikki Smith, FF Josh Wooding, FF Stuart Hanaray.
5 year medal: Qualified firefighter (QFF) Jason Fishburn, QFF Tim Smith.
Silver Bars: Senior officer (SO) John Cameron, 7 years. FF Kiley Boddington, 9 years. SO Nigel Botham, 9 years. SO Dallas Mead, 9 years. SO Tony Nolan, 9 years. QFF Mark Kennedy, 11 years. Senior firefighter (SFF) Stacey Morrison, 11 years. SFF Bryan Simpson, 11 years. SFF Daniel Woodhouse, 11 years. SO Craig Love, 13 years. SO Scott Rowbottom, 13 years.
This story has been updated from the original version
The Marlborough Express