Advocate for the community set to take the baton
Baton bearer: After living in a handful of towns in Central Queensland, Douglas Churchill has found a community to call home, and continues to give back to the region.
Mr Churchill has been a stalwart supporter in every community he has lived in, from Duaringa to Barcaldine, Cloncurry and the past 21 years in Aramac.
He has contributed as a coach, competitor and on the committees of several sporting bodies during his adult life, including swimming, rugby league, cricket, lawn bowls and touch football.
"I try and do things for the community as much as I can,” Mr Churchill said.
"If you can't do something for your own community, then who's going to do it?
"If we all don't get in and help, no-one will. I enjoy it and the interaction with other people.
"Over the years, we've had a lot of people who have helped out, its not just me.
"Aramac is just a small town so we all get in and help each other out. It doesn't matter who it is, you just go and help them because you know they need help.
"There's a core group that love helping and its good to work with them, I enjoy it.”
Through his many community contributions, Mr Churchill will represent the community of Aramac as a baton bearer in the 2018 Commonwealth Games Queen's Baton Relay, when it passes through Barcaldine next year.
When he found out he had been selected, Mr Churchill said he was so excited he just wanted to tell everyone.
"I was ecstatic actually. But I couldn't let anyone know for three months until the official day, back in October,” he said.
"I nearly let it slip a couple of times. I hadn't really thought about it before, I thought only the people who are really doing something would get that, but yeah I am really happy.
"Most of the family rang me up and congratulated me. I'm really excited.”
Mr Churchill is an auxiliary firefighter, and has been serving between rural and urban for nearly 32 years, being the captain for Aramac for the past 10 years.
Although he didn't always want to be a firefighter, once he started, he just couldn't stop.
"Kids love us because we go to the school and they love coming up and seeing the big red truck and hearing the sirens,” Mr Churchill said.
"We get a pretty good reaction from the little kids.
"Every year we do the Christmas Eve Santa run, handing out lollies, ice blocks and poppers, and all the kids love getting photos with Santa.
"One of our recruits normally get to dress up as Santa.
"The kids love it and we get a kick out of it. It's Christmas joy for everyone.”
The 56-year-old has also been a member of the SES for 35 years and, for the past 10 years, has been the local controller in Aramac, before passing on the reins.
"Its about helping the area to keep everyone safe,” Mr Churchill said.
"We do fire education at the school. We actually teach about fire safety, the SES and life saving, swimming in the ocean and about the flags.
"Keeping our community safe is the main thing.”
Mr Churchill said running in the baton relay would be like winning the grand final in footy.
"Everyone is going to enjoy themselves,” he said.
"There's not going to be a winner or loser, but carrying a baton you're going to be a winner all the way through.”