Farewell after 40 years

Geoff Audsley is hanging up his helmet for the final time.

By Tate Papworth

After a career spanning more than four decades, one of Brimbank’s best and bravest is about to hang up his helmet for the final time.

Sunshine MFB member Geoff Audsley will work his final shift today, ending a career dedicated to saving lives and property.

Mr Audsley said it was strange to think it was all coming to an end.

“It’s funny, you think about what you’ll say at your retirement party, but how do you sum up 40 years in three minutes?” he said.

“It’s slowly sinking in, given the nature of the work you’re constantly on different shifts, which means I’m talking to different people about it all the time.”

Mr Audsley, who is a member of the industrial and road rescue team at the Sunshine station, said some of the horrors he’s seen have taken a toll.

“It gets harder to see these things as you get older … you become more sympathetic,” he said.

“But you have to remind yourself that there’s nothing you could have done. This person isn’t in this situation because of anything you’ve done.”

While there’s been some gory parts, Mr Audsley said it’s been a joy to give four decades of service.

“I love the thrill of it all,” he said. “No two days are the same, there’s a different situation every day.

“There’s also the joy you get in working with and for the community.”

Mr Audsley says one of his proudest moments was receiving the Australian Fire Service Medal in the Queen’s Birthday honours in 2009.

Coincidentally, Mr Audsley graced the front page of

Star Weekly’s predecessor, The Advocate, in its corresponding edition 10 years ago.

“I had to pinch myself when I was awarded that,” he said.

However he wasn’t initially keen to join.

“I was travelling … and my dad called me to say he’d booked me in for an interview.

“I figured I’d go to make him happy and if I got the job, I’d give it six months to see if I liked it. Here we are 40 years later.”