FIREFIGHTERS in Western Sydney will stop ‘‘seeing double’’ from this week.
Fire & Rescue NSW Western Sydney Area Commander, Chief Superintendent Tom Milburn, and his twin brother, Seven Hills Station Officer Chris retired on Friday after firefighting careers spanning more than three decades.
Chief Superintendent Milburn,60, joined FRNSW (formerly the NSW Fire Brigades) on April 22, 1977.
He served as a firefighter and senior officer at fire stations across Sydney and NSW, and even as Fire Chief in the Solomon Islands, before being appointed Western Sydney area commander three years ago.
His twin brother, station officer Chris Milburn, joined the brigades 18 months after his brother on the promise of an “exciting career” change.
After joining in 1979, Station Officer Milburn has spent his firefighting career serving the western Sydney communities of Parramatta, Penrith, Mt Druitt, Regentville and Seven Hills.
The two brothers say it was time to move on to spend more time with their families.
Chief Superintendent Milburn said the job was physically demanding and it was time to pass on the heavy responsibilities to younger men.
‘‘I want to play more golf, attend to more household chores like gardening and to travel overseas with my wife,’’ he said.
His brother, Chris said he would be doing some building projects which he had been putting off as well as some travelling across the country and overseas.
The two brothers’ last advice to firefighters was firefighting was the the best job in the world and they should do their very best.
‘‘You should listen to your bosses, be professional and wear your uniform with pride,’’ Supt Tom said.
FRNSW Commissioner Greg Mullins said Chief Superintendent Milburn was awarded an Australian Fire Services Medal in 2008, the highest honour that can be bestowed on an Australian firefighter.
‘‘He was later awarded the Police Overseas Service Medal in recognition of his work in the Solomons,” he said.
“His brother also received a Letter of Appreciation from the Commissioner for his actions at a fire in St Clair in 1997 where he and his fellow firefighters performed their duties under difficult circumstances.’’