Manji cop honored with National Medal
Grinning from ear to ear, it was hard not to smile as First Class Constable Tim Jones received his National Medal on Tuesday.
For the past 15 years, the Balingup father of two has dedicated his life to helping the community that helped him.
“I was in my mid-late 20s when I came to the South West and started driving trucks,” he said. “Then I became a sole parent and have been looking after my kids for the last 20 odd years in Balingup.”
The community there took me in, took my boys in and we all look after each other. Small communities do that.
“I wanted to put something back into the community, so I joined the local volunteer bushfire brigade.”
He moved quickly through the ranks from firefighter, to lieutenant and fire control officer, before becoming a shire ranger, looking after Dardanup, Boyup Brook and Donnybrook.
And it has taken him “all over the place”.
“I’ve been to a few big fires ... my first fire was actually a fuel truck fire on the Balingup hill,” he said.
“Then we had some big bushfires go through Bridgetown, and I went up to help with the Kalamunda fires as well. I’ve been deployed all over the place.”
And for the past 3.5 years, he has been on the frontline in a different profession, joining the WA Police Force, based in Manjimup.
It just seemed like a natural progression — something a little bit different but still being actively involved in the community and helping people out.
Part of his work is visiting schools to talk to students about staying on the right track, which Tim hoped would make a difference in their lives.
And next year, he will be extending a helping hand to another community, swapping the hills of Balingup for the rainforests of Peru on a six-month volunteer trip followed by a holiday.
But home is where the heart is, and following his year abroad, Tim will be heading back to the region he loves, and continue policing for many years to come.
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