Community spirit

Gumeracha group officer Rick Drury, left, Chris Bird, Brian Lewis, Daryl Hutchins, Jeremy Sparrow, John McFarlane, Darren Harris, John McMahon, Robert Ratcliff and Matt Pavlic, (members of the Paracombe CFS).

As we mark two years since the horrific Cudlee Creek fire swept through the Hills, it’s appropriate that the hundreds of men and women who risked their lives for their community are honored.
More than 2200 CFS members will be presented with the National Emergency Medal next year, including many from the Hills.
These are the men and women who, on December 20, 2019, left their own sometimes vulnerable properties to save other people’s homes.
They are the ones who set aside work, said goodbye to family members and put their own lives at risk to make other people safer.
As we enter the full swing of summer yet again, these are the same men and women who will be on standby for our region – demonstrating a strong community spirit that puts the wellbeing of others ahead of their own.
Over the past two years since the Cudlee Creek fire, Hills residents have demonstrated a similar community spirit – rallying together to support one another through the recovery from one of the Hills’ most devastating disasters.
And it’s this community connection that – even as many Hills families continue to re-build their lives two years on – makes the region one of the best places to live.
Living in the Hills is never without danger – something we realised, yet again, when the Cherry Gardens fire swept through part of the region a little over 12 months after the Cudlee Creek fire.
But part of what makes this region one of the best in Australia, is that sense of community and unity in the face of adversity.
So this summer, let’s keep that community spirit strong.
Let’s support our local heroes – the men and women who are always at the ready to fight fires and respond to car crashes – by doing the right thing on the roads and in our backyards.
Let’s have our fire plans ready, let’s follow the road rules to give our local heroes and our community the best chance of having the Christmas season they deserve.