Australia Wildfires, Australia Fires, Councillor Travels To Australia, Dan Derouin, Edmonton Fire Service, Former Edmonton Firefighter Travels To Australia, Outback Fires, Sturgeon County

Australia Wildfires, Australia Fires

With no plan in place, a retired Edmonton firefighter flew out to Australia to help fight wildfires

'If I didn't do it then, I thought I never would, so yeah, [I] bought the ticket,' Dan Derouin said.

2020-01-26 6:53:00 AM

Essentially throwing a dart at a map of Australia, this Edmonton man headed down under to see how he could help battle the country's wildfires.

'If I didn't do it then, I thought I never would, so yeah, [I] bought the ticket,' Dan Derouin said.

Dan Derouin/Global NewsAfter finally getting in contact with fire personnel, the local fire chief found a place for him.Story continues below advertisement“He sent me to Adaminaby and that’s where I went,” Derouin said.“I went and joined the boys there on the ground and they put me to work right away.”

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Dan DerouinDan Derouin/Global NewsWhile the fight was intense, there were also moments of beauty, seeing all sorts of wildlife and even a chance to work alongside a well-known Australian.“The ex-prime minister of Australia, he’s a firefighter, Tony Abbott,” Derouin said.

“He was there, [I] talked with him, worked with him the one day, then we had a beer at the local pub the next.”Image of Dan Derouin with former Australian Prime Minister Tony Abott.Dan Derouin/Global NewsWhile Derouin could have taken time to shop and visit sites, he instead gave every minute of his trip to help fight fires up until his departure.

Story continues below advertisement“I hope I made a difference, even talking to the guys, giving them some encouragement, being with them every day,” Derouin recalled.“They were surprised that I stuck out, actually.” Read more: Globalnews.ca »

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