Long-serving Rotorua firefighters gathered with their families, colleagues, and the mayor at the city's fire station this afternoon, where they were honoured for decades of service.

Fire and Emergency New Zealand area manager Jeff Maunder thanked the 14 recipients before mayor Steve Chadwick presented their medals and clasps.

"In the days where a lot of the focus is on self, for people to spend a lot of time in the service of one organisation is quite something," Maunder said.

Chadwick said last year's April floods demonstrated the extent of the Rotorua firefighters' selflessness.

Advertisement

"I was incredibly impressed at how calm their heads were... It was no joke that night when we heard what had unfolded."

Some of the medal and clasp recipients. Photo / Samantha Olley
Some of the medal and clasp recipients. Photo / Samantha Olley

She thanked the recipients' family members "who let them go at the drop of a hat".

Volunteer Lynette Galvan said the "great family" at Fire and Emergency New Zealand had kept her coming back to help her community.

She first started volunteering in Pūtāruru before she had children.

"You sometimes have to sacrifice spending time with friends and family, but I will keep going as long as I am fit and able because I have a passion for helping others.

"It is something I am proud of and my family is proud of."

Long-serving volunteer Lynette Galvan. Photo / Samantha Olley
Long-serving volunteer Lynette Galvan. Photo / Samantha Olley

Galvan said females had no reason to feel intimidated by the male majority if they wanted to join Fire and Emergency New Zealand.

"Just get in touch with your local station. You will learn some great skills."

Advertisement

The New Zealand Fire Brigades' Long Service and Good Conduct Medal is awarded to uniformed members after 14 years, and a clasp is added for every seven years of service after that.

It is the only medal that is issued to fire and emergency services by the Queen, for their service.

Long Service and Good Conduct Medal, 14 years
Dean Irwin Rotorua
Kereama Katu Rotorua
Barry Hogan Rotorua
Lynette Galvan Rotorua
Ken Austin Kāingaroa
Richard Haunui Kāingaroa
Kevin Bryant Kāingaroa
Stuart Lyall Lake Ōkareka
Gary Benfell Rotorua (23 years service completed)

Medal and First Clasp, 21 years
Mike Baillie Rotorua
Nigel Baker Rotorua
Phil Muldoon Lake Ōkareka
Janet Scott Lake Tarawera

Medal First Clasp and Second Clasp, 28 years
Brett Bosley Lake Tarawera