THE word "family" rang out many times during a powerful ceremony at the Ulladulla SES base recently.
Unit members and special guests gathered to mark the 10th anniversary of the devastating Father's Day cyclonic-like event in 2010.
The gathering was also held to commemorate how a member of the Bankstown SES, Ian Bassam, made the ultimate sacrifice.
Mr Bassam was one of the many out of town SES volunteers who came to the region and helped with the massive clean up operation.
Mr Bassam sadly did not make it home.
His wife Carole was one of the special guests at the event and got to see the unveiling of a plaque to honour him.
Ulladulla SES unit controller Tracy Provest was one of many people to thank Mr Bassam for his sacrifice.
Unit controller Provest also spoke about the intense nature of the storm.
The unit was swamped and received 940 requests for help.
"The requests did not all come on the same day but pretty much had by the second day," she said.
The region had no power for five days, the clean-up took three and a half weeks and 23 out of town SES teams came to help.
Mayor of Shoalhaven City, Amanda Findley, was another of the guests and she remembers the storm and the work of the SES well.
"It was amazing to see so much orange on the ground," Cr Findley said.
The Mayor wanted to thank all the SES volunteers for their work and she made special mention of Mr Bassam.
Cr Findley also spent time talking with Mrs Bassam before and after the ceremony.
Zone commander NSW SES Colin Malone also spoke at the event and said the likes of Mr and Mrs Bassam showed the SES was a family organisation and more than just volunteers.
Zone Commander Malone says the SES is well and truly part of their community.
"We are an orange, SES family," he said.
Mr Malone said the self-sacrifice of the SES volunteers extended to their families, which also should be commemorated and remembered.
Unit controller Provest concluded by saying how proud she of her team.
"It's a privilege to lead this amazing group of people," she said.
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