FIRE service friends and colleagues were deeply saddened by the July 2 passing of long serving station officer and instructor, Andrew Gaston, of the CFA North East Region Training Department, following his courageous battle with illness.
Andrew began his service with the CFA in 1974 as a member of Eltham Fire Brigade, and then transferred to Kerang Fire Brigade before commencing his career as a firefighter with CFA in 1986.
During his initial years on staff he was stationed at Springvale, Dandenong and Wangaratta fire brigades.
He also performed higher duties as a District Officer and operations officer predominately in District 23.
Andrew was an instructor in the North East region for 16 years, working from the Wangaratta District 23 office.
Many people within CFA, wider emergency service sector and community groups, have had the benefit of knowing and working with him in operational roles and in training environments.
Andrew’s hallmark was his commitment to CFA, its members and the community, all of who benefited from his leadership, experience, knowledge and for many others, his friendship.
In recognition of his commitment and achievements throughout his career, he was awarded the National Medal with 2nd clasp and the National Emergency Medal.
In September 2016 he was presented with the Outstanding Service Medal by the acting CFA chief officer, Steve Warrington.
“Andrew Gaston has provided unselfish service to CFA over his entire career,” Mr Warrington said at the presentation last year.
“He has always displayed a willingness to share his knowledge, and to assist others, within CFA, the wider emergency services sector and community groups.
A service to celebrate Andrews’s life was held on Friday, July 7 at the Wangaratta Christian Fellowship, followed by a guard of honour that Andrew passed through on his way to being interred at Wangaratta Cemetery.
Andrew was aged 59 and is survived by his wife Lorraine and their four children Kaylene, Michelle, Shane and Nicole.