Firefighter honoured for distinguished service

Chris Towe

Member of The Entrance Fire and Rescue NSW, Chris Towe, has been recognised in the Commissioner’s Orders for his service during the 2019-2020 bushfire emergency.

The 26-year-old from Long Jetty will receive the Fire and Rescue NSW Unit Commendation for Meritorious Service, which is awarded to those who have distinguished themselves in a manner worthy of recognition.

Towe said that he found out about the award a few months ago and would receive it in a ceremony on the Coast once COVID-19 restrictions ease.

“There’s 10 others on the Coast receiving this award, and we were meant to have already had a ceremony, but COVID got in the way of that.

“I haven’t received anything like this before, so it’s really humbling.

“I was in Nowra on New Year’s Day fighting the fires there and I went to the fire at Gospers Mountain.

“Preparing to go in those fires, it’s all about remembering your training and trusting your crew and equipment.

“You also need to remember that you’re there to help people so it’s really rewarding,” Towe said.

Towe has been with Fire and Rescue for eight years and has been based at The Entrance station for the past five years.

“My Dad and brother were both in Fire and Rescue, so I thought I’d join as well.

“I was based in Warren in Western NSW for three years with my Dad and brother, and then I came to The Entrance.

“I love what I do and I love helping people out.

“With Fire and Rescue NSW, we have bushfire fighting capabilities, but we mainly deal with industrial fires, and car accidents, chemical fires, and medical assists helping paramedics.

“What drew me to firefighting is just helping people, you see people on the worst days of their lives, and you are able to help them, so there’s a lot of job satisfaction there,” Towe said.

Harry Mulholland