Edenhope’s Evan Arnold humbled by Order of Australia Medal

PRIVILEGE: Edenhope man Evan Arnold will receive an Order of Australia Medal. Pictures: PAUL CARRACHERBEING recognised with a Medal of the Order of Australia has humbled Evan Arnold.

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The Edenhope man has been honoured for his service to the community he has called home for 54 years.

‘‘It brought me to tears when I got the note to say I was nominated,’’ he said.

‘‘I’ve enjoyed everything I’ve done for the community.’’

Mr Arnold moved to Edenhope in 1961, doing farm work and later working for the Shire of Kowree.

He became a member of the Edenhope Pastoral and Agricultural Society in 1965, was president for two terms and was awarded a life membership in 2004.

Mr Arnold said he was still an active member of the society.

‘‘I live a block away from the showground so I still do little jobs there,’’ he said.

Mr Arnold retired from working for the West Wimmera shire in 1994.

‘‘It gave me more time to do a bit more around the community,’’ he said.

With involvement in so many organisations, the time was welcome.

Mr Arnold was a member of the Edenhope Lions Club from 1980 to 2013 and president for two terms.

He was the Edenhope State Emergency Services disaster controller from 1988 to 1996, a member of the Edenhope Mechanics Hall Committee from 1966 to 2011 and a member of the Edenhope High School Council of Management from 1975 to 1983.

Mr Arnold is the vice-president of the Edenhope Men’s Shed and helped build its new premises two years ago.

He also volunteered his time to help construct, maintain and operate the Edenhope Aerodrome, ensuring 24-hour access for the West Wimmera Air Ambulance between 1974 and 1995.

Mr Arnold said a volunteering role that stuck in his mind was his time as an emergency blood donor at Edenhope and District Memorial Hospital in the 1960s and ’70s.

‘‘I have a universal blood type,’’ he said.

‘‘Whenever they needed me the doctor would call me up to give blood.

‘‘One particular case I remember was when I was called in to help a 10-yearold boy who eventually lost his leg.

‘‘I directly gave blood to him in the same room.’’

Mr Arnold said he was unable to volunteer as much as he used to.

‘‘I’m just doing what I can,’’ he said.

As well as volunteering, Mr Arnold enjoys tractor restoration and gardening.

He said he would attend a breakfast at Edenhope today.

‘‘Thanks to the people who nominated me, to the secretariat at Government House and the Governor General,’’ he said.

‘‘I put this award to all the volunteers in the community.’’

He said he hoped people would continue to volunteer in every aspect of the community.

‘‘I’m one spoke in a big wheel,’’ he said.

‘‘The community runs on volunteers.’’

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