Michael Kovacs - Westfield Local Heroes 2020
Braving extreme danger
NSW Rural Fire Service
Trustworthy. Passionate. Dedicated.
Volunteer firefighter Michael Kovacs joined the NSW Rural Fire Service 30 years ago when he was 14.
A brave and respected leader, Michael was Captain of the Londonderry RFS for 10 years, and his peers have now voted him Deputy Group Captain and assists in coordination and overseeing the management of 6 brigades.
Michael volunteers between 20 and 30 hours a week while continuing to serve as an NSW police officer.
Michael is much admired by his colleagues and feels great pride about being able to help people in their time of need, not only in NSW but also in emergencies in other states.
During the recent bushfire emergency, Michael started fighting fires in August 2019 and did not stop until the end of January.
He and his strike teams put themselves in extreme danger to directly save people and properties. They were trapped by intense fire on more than one occasion.
"I personally dragged residents out of burning buildings and escorted them through fire to get them to safety," Michael says.
"It’s a great pride in serving the communities in their time of need and assisting them to return to some form of normality".
Westfield Local Heroes are nominated and voted for by their communities, with the three top finalists per Westfield centre each awarded a $10,000 grant for their affiliated organisation. The NSW Rural Fire Service will use its grant to buy a trailer and training equipment.
For further information on the Westfield Local Heroes program, click here