It is with great sadness that the AVBFB farewells another friend of our amazing volunteer bushfire service. Mr Darrell Wiese, former President of the Narrogin Shire Council sadly passed away on 26 August 2017.
Darrell was possibly best known in the bush fire community for his work on the Upper Great Southern District Operations Advisory Committee (DOAC) but his devotion to his community ran much deeper than that. We have included a short speech that was given in 2012 when he and his wife Helen received the 2012 Narrogin Citizen of the Year Award below, only because it gives a very brief overview of some of the incredible work they had done for our State at that time. And for those who knew Darrell, know that he packed in a whole lot more in the 5 years that have passed since.
While we all know in our hearts that the end is an inevitability, it is often only when our friends and colleagues pass that we take the time to reflect on what is really important in life. Like many of our amazing 26,000 volunteer bush fire brigade members, it’s clear that Mr Darrell Wiese valued his community and its safety above all.
Farewell Darrell. Our deepest condolences to your friends and family and if you are still able to hear us, thank you for everything you did for our community.
Details of Darrell’s funeral:
The Funeral Service for the late Mr Darrell Lawrence Wiese of Narrogin and “Yarranabee” will be celebrated with a Requiem Mass in St. Matthew’s Roman Catholic Church, Earl Street, Narrogin on MONDAY morning (04.09.2017) commencing at 11.00am. Following the Service, the Cortege will proceed to the Narrogin Cemetery for Burial.
2012 Citizen of the year citation
It is with great pleasure that I recognise Darrell and Helen Wiese as joint recipients of the 2012 Shire of Narrogin Citizen of the Year Award.
It is fitting that we recognise Helen and Darrell together as they form a formidable team when it comes to serving our community.
Helen and Darrell farm their property, “Yarranabee”, which is located south of Highbury and adjoins the Shire of Wagin, where they have raised their three children, Colleen, Ashley and Roselyn.
The Wiese family settled in Highbury on the 20th October 1900. Darrell and Helen are the 3rd generation to continuously and successfully expand, and introduce new innovative farming practices, and now do so with their son Ashley.
To be considered for this prestigious award, the recipient will have demonstrated a commitment to community service as well as showing strong leadership. This goes without saying when you think of Helen and Darrell.
As passionate advocates for the Highbury district, they have been involved in almost every aspect of community life in Highbury. Whenever there was an event to organise, Helen and Darrell would be the first to put up their hands. Their involvement in the activities promoted by the Highbury District Community Council and the Highbury & District Disaster Fund has helped to reinforce the identity of this small community. Whether it was town clean-ups, fundraising events, busy bees, ANZAC Day commemorations, community building projects and the like, you would always see Helen and Darrell participating in or organising the event. Highbury has been fortunate to have such dedicated citizens, always willing to give of their time and resources to make it a better place for all.
As many of you know, Darrell has served as a Councillor of the Shire of Narrogin for many years. In fact, he was first elected to Council in 1987 and is now in his 25th year of service. During this time Darrell accepted higher roles and was Deputy President for three years and then President for eleven years. I’m sure you would all agree that this demonstrates a real commitment to the residents of the Shire of Narrogin. I know that the current Councillors are benefiting from Darrell’s extensive knowledge and experience.
An involvement in the Shire has lead Darrell to take on a variety of other roles, including being a representative on the Management Committee for the Narrogin Cottage Homes, Chairperson and Member of the FESA District Operations Committee, Inaugural Chairperson of the Wheatbelt South Regional Road Group and Inaugural Member of the Narrogin Land Conservation District Committee.
I could go on more about Darrell, but I would like to come back to Helen and Darrell sharing an interest and working together. They have been active members of the Narrogin Agricultural Show Committee helping to put on the Agricultural Show each year. In the early days of the Narrogin Spring Festival you would see them actively supporting that event, setting up their truck for the entertainment in the Gnarojin Park. Darrell is the Deputy Chief Bush Fire Control Officer for the Shire and the local Fire Control Officer for the Highbury South Brigade, but they have both been active in manning the bush fire radio and filling in as the Base Radio Operator when called upon, since the radio operations began.
If there is any time for relaxation, enjoying clay target shooting has been their favourite recreational activity. They are life members and great supporters of the Narrogin Clay Target Club. They were involved with the building of the first Club facilities and the relocation to the current site. Darrell and Helen also spent some time as representatives on the State body, in the office and in coaching roles for the sport.
I think you would all agree that this is an outstanding list of achievements and I’m sure I have missed some others. It demonstrates Helen and Darrell’s generosity to give of their time so willingly to benefit the Highbury and Narrogin communities. In recognition of this outstanding effort I have great pleasure in presenting them with the 2012 Shire of Narrogin Citizen of the Year Award.