Two local surf lifesavers and life members of the Elliott Heads Surf Life Saving Club have recently been honoured with the prestigious National Medal.
Dale Leggett and Trevor Harvey were presented with the award by Surf Life Saving Australia, which recognises individuals who risk their lives or safety to protect or assist the community in enforcement of the law or in times of emergency or natural disaster.
Both surf life savers have been an active part of the club for more than four decades between them and have many fond memories of their time in the sun, surf and sand.
Trevor said it was his son's involvement in Nippers that spurred him to become a members of the Elliott Heads Surf Life Saving Club in 2004.
“From being a patrolling member I then became Youth Development Officer, then I took on the role as Club Captain for 13 years and since then I have been club CTO (chief training officer),” he said.
“I love the mateship, helping people and I also love training and upskilling up-and-coming lifesavers.”
Trevor said there had been many memorable times during his membership, as well as some challenges.
“My most memorable time was in the 2013 floods when we got to coordinate with other life saving members on helicopters,” he said.
“The role has taught me that things can change, especially in the ocean, and you should never underestimate it.
“It has also taught me to just to be a caring person because in this role you put yourself in danger before anyone else.”
Dale Leggett said he had been involved with Elliott Heads Surf Life Saving Club for 23 years and loved the patrol group and the people he met every week.
“I have always been involved in surf life saving from a young age – I loved the beach so it was just a normal step,” he said.
“The role has taught me a lot about discipline and self belief.
“I've been involved in a few dangerous rescues over the years but to me its more about limiting the rescues with preventive actions and always teaching kids and or adults about the dangers of the beach early.”
About the National Medal
Established in 1975 as a military recognition award, the National Medal has since branched out into government and voluntary organisations and is now Australia’s most awarded civil medal.
The National Medal is available to Surf Life Saving Australia volunteers who are eligible with a minimum of 30 hours each season, who have completed a minimum period of 15 seasons, from 18 September 1986.
Dale and Trevor join a short but distinguished list of surf lifesavers from the Elliott Heads SLSC who have previously been presented with the National Medal, including:
- Scott Collins
- Brett Holden
- David Merefield Hawkeye Pearce (First Clasp – 25 years)
- Kristine Holden (First Clasp – 25 years)
- Craig Holden (First Clasp – 25 years)
To view the full list of award recipients click here.