The community is mourning the loss of long-time fire brigade member Tony Cosgriff.
Mr Cosgriff passed away on April 13 at the age of 75-years-old.
He and his family moved to Stawell from Melbourne in the mid-1970s, where Mr Cosgriff began work at Seppelt Wines.
He then moved on to work as the chief engineer at Aradale and then looked after infrastructure for western Victoria for the Department of Human Services.
Mr Cosgriff finished his working career at Hopkins Correctional Centre, working as a guard for 10 years.
Despite a variety of occupations throughout his life, Mr Cosgriff was a dedicated volunteer with the Ararat Fire Brigade.
"He first joined the Ararat Rural Fire Brigade in February 1980, serving as an officer in various roles. He then joined the Ararat Urban Fire Brigade and was there when the two amalgamated to become the one Ararat Fire Brigade," Tony's son David Cosgriff said.
"He loved it and loved helping people. He also loved the companionship, teamwork and social side of things.
"He even bought a house next to the fire station."
Mr Cosgriff served in many roles in his 39 year with the CFA, including brigade secretary, first lieutenant and equipment officer.
He was also one of many firefighters that put their hand up to tackle the Black Saturday fires, earning an award for his efforts.
"Dad went away with a few strike teams, including down to the Kinglake area on Black Saturday," David Cosgriff said.
"He received a national emergency medal for doing that."
Ararat Fire Brigade captain Rob Starick said Mr Cosgriff was a "valued member".
"Living next door to the station, Tony was often the first one around to respond to calls," he said.
"He had so much experience and knowledge that he would pass onto other members.
"He had many roles which he did to the best of his ability. He will be sorely missed."
The brigade life member's involvement with the CFA also lended him the opportunity to issue fire safety training at his various workplaces as well as service fire equipment around the region.
David Cosgriff said his father had the community at heart.
"I'd love him to be remembered as an honest and genuine bloke, willing to help anyone," he said.
"Thanks to staff at Gorrin House for the care and support they gave him and to his coffee mates who helped him get out and about."
Mr Cosgriff's funeral will be held at the John Dunn Memorial Chapel in Ararat from 11am on Tuesday, April 23. It will be held with full fire service honours, with full dress uniform for members in attendance and a guard of honour to be formed at the chapel.
Mr Cosgriff is survived by children Karen, David, Shaun and Prue, daughter-in-law Jocelyn and grandchildren Joel, Ashley, Michelle, Glen, Liam, Evenne, Baydn, Max, Rhett, Sophie, Dominic, Isobell and Connor.
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