Streaky Bay ambulance volunteer to receive service medal

SERVICE: Lawrence Tomney (second left) with Jason Habel, Belinda Black and volunteer clinical education manage Keith Rooney after being recognised for 45 years of service to SA Ambulance in 2017. Photo: supplied
SERVICE: Lawrence Tomney (second left) with Jason Habel, Belinda Black and volunteer clinical education manage Keith Rooney after being recognised for 45 years of service to SA Ambulance in 2017. Photo: supplied

A devoted Streaky Bay ambulance volunteer will be recognised for nearly 50 years of service as a recipient of the Ambulance Service Medal.

Lawrence Tomney was announced as one of the medal recipients as part of this year's Australia Day honours.

He will be one of 22 people to receive the medal across Australia, and one of two from South Australia alongside Nichole Bastian from Osborne.

Mr Tomney has been an SAAS volunteer ambulance officer in Streaky Bay for nearly 50 years, which started after he received his St John Ambulance certification in October, 1971.

During his time he has earned great respect from his peers and fellow emergency service personnel, as well as from the community with Streaky Bay District Council awarding him Citizen of the Year in 2015.

He has been described as a dedicated, committed, honest and friendly person who has been willing to teach and mentor new members coming into the service, as well as display a great level of care for patients and families during stressful times.

However Mr Tomney said he did not seek recognition or accolades and instead wanted to help the community, working alongside some great people along the way.

"All the volunteers they are wonderful people, all the people you work with and get along with, all of them are a great group really," he said.

Mr Tomney said volunteers had come and gone during his time and he was always willing to help to keep the ambulance service going in Streaky Bay.

He said the service had changed in his nearly 50 years with it, from a volunteer's duties to the equipment used and while it duties were more difficult than when he started they had improved things for the better as a whole.

"It was mainly first aid when I started, now it's different altogether," he said.

On top of being an ambulance volunteer Mr Tomney has also been involved over the years with the Country Fire Service at Poochera, as well as local football clubs.

While Mr Tomney is nearing the end of his time as an ambulance volunteer due to his age, he said he was proud of the work he had done over many years and was honoured to receive the Ambulance Service Medal.

This story Tomney recognised for half century of service first appeared on Port Lincoln Times.