Heroes humbled by awards
SUZANNE Connors chokes up with emotion when asked about her most vivid memories from Cyclone Debbie six months ago.
The Proserpine-based peer supporter for the Whitsunday SES Group said she would never forget the overwhelming support she and her colleagues received from the entire community.
That's why she and her teammates were so humbled to be singled out for accolades at a special award ceremony for central region personnel to mark SES Week across the state.
"It's been a hard year so it's nice to be recognised by your peers, but we feel that we weren't the only ones to help. It was a real team effort from everyone, and that's the message we want to get across, ” Mrs Connors said.
"Whether you were doing a little bit to help, or something bigger, it all counted.”
On a red-letter day for the Proserpine volunteers at the ceremony, Member of the Year was awarded to Gregory Yuskan for his commitment and service to the SES, its members and the Proserpine community.
SES area controller James Kennedy said Mr Yuskan had regularly gone above and beyond for his community and his fellow SES, most recently during Debbie.
"That he did this while also dealing with the fact his own home and family had been impacted reflects his character,” said Mr Kennedy.
"We're fortunate to have him involved with the SES.”
Mr Yuskan now goes through to the state finals in Brisbane on Sunday.
SES Regional Group of the Year was awarded to Proserpine for everything the team did for the Whitsunday community following Cyclone Debbie.
"Tropical Cyclone Debbie personally affected each member of this group but they put their own grief and misfortune aside to ensure their community got the help it desperately needed,” Mr Kennedy said. .
"It was only when the rest of the community had received the assistance it needed that these members went back to their families and homes.”
SES Week certificates were presented to Derek Rowlands, Cody Best, Michelle Dwyer, Craig Wood, Rosemary Lyons, Anthony Hinschen, Adrian Dawson, Ann-Marie McMillan, Christine Persello, Frances Richardson, Martina Hogarth and Suzanne Connors.