Top honour for surf lifesaving's double act
CONSIDERING how much time they've spent together travelling to various surf life saving carnivals as officials, it's only fitting Wayne Scott and John Wake were both awarded Surf Life Saving NSW life memberships at the same time.
Scott from Red Rock-Corindi SLSC and Wake from Coffs Harbour SLSC admit it was right that the two of them received such a prestigious honour together.
"We're constantly referred to by officials and people in the organisation as the 'terrible two' or 'the twins'," John joked,
"We do a lot of things together and we've made a lot of friends."
It wouldn't be a surf life saving carnival without John or Wayne there. Be it branch, country, state or nationals, you would've found this pair at all of them for a quarter of a century.
"Wayne and I have travelled together for 25 years," John said. "At least that," chimed Wayne.
"I dragged him to the world's last year for the first time. I started going to worlds in 96," John said.
While John admits prior to the advent of cars and phones having a GPS in them, Wayne's navigation often took them on "mystery tours", he said the reason the two of them keep coming back is simple.
"It's just a great community and we support one another," Wake said.
"It's a way of giving back to the community."
Wake originally joined Urunga in 1972 before changing to Coffs Harbour years later. Wayne's first foray into surf life saving was way back in 1955 at Port Kembla but he left after "five or six years" when family and work became the number one priorities.
A move to Halfway Creek and other circumstances resulted in Wayne joining Red Rock-Corindi in 1986. A club he's proudly called home ever since.
Such long service leads to recognition with life memberships but Wayne admits the honour is one that's left him humbled.
"No way in the world did I ever think that I would be awarded a life member of Surf Life Saving NSW," he said.
"When you look at Billy Singleton and what Bill's put into surf lifesaving and 'Cactus', Mike Moran. I looked up to these people when I first came in and for me to be up with that group of people, I never thought I'd live long enough."
Surf Life Saving NSW president David Murray said Wake and Scott fully deserved such recognition.
"I was extremely pleased to announce John Wake and Wayne Scott were among a select group of people awarded life membership of Surf Life Saving NSW," Murray said.
"Both of these veteran lifesavers have contributed so much to Surf Life Saving on the North Coast over many years and I congratulate them on this well-deserved recognition."