Long service recognised
by Mike Isle
One of Canterbury’s longest-serving volunteer fire officers passed a major milestone last month when he was awarded his 50-Year Service Medal.
Lloyd Clausen, who is the Leeston Volunteer Fire Brigade chief fire officer, joined the brigade in 1968 while still at school.
“I obviously couldn’t turn out when I was at school,” he recalls. “However, I turned out at all other times.”
Mr Clausen said the motivation to join was his family’s long-time involvement with the brigade. “My grandfather Frank and father Bertram were both in the brigade. When dad was in the brigade, he ended up doing 42 years before he retired.
“My brother Grant also joined the brigade, and he has done close to 40 years.”
Despite the passage of time, Mr Clausen can remember his first call-out, a chimney fire in Brookside. Other more recent call-outs have passed from memory. There have been so many of them. However, one that is sharply edged in his memory was a “massive” bush fire in Nimmo’s that started on Waitangi Day 1990 and went on for a month.
“At one stage, we had an appliance there for over a week, running 24/7.”
Mr Clausen’s boss, Canterbury Area Commander Dave Berry told The Record: “The community owes Lloyd a huge debt of gratitude not only for his service as a fire officer but also for the work he does in the community.”
Lloyd Clausen is the chair of the Leeston Community Committee and is on the area committee for St John and manages one of the swimming pools in Leeston.
He has lived in Leeston all his life.
The 65-year-old has no plans for immediate retirement, though he does admit to enjoying those times he gets to read and spend with family.