Four local firefighters have clocked up 43 years of service between them.
Gunnedah Fire and Rescue's deputy captain Andrew Johns, Adrian Melick and Jeremy Gallagher received long service and good conduct medals for 10 years of service from 2008-2018 in the last fortnight. Captain David Welch marked 10 years in August.
Both Mr Johns and Mr Melick signed up with Fire and Rescue NSW (FRNSW) in November 2008 but in different towns.
Mr Melick applied for a position in Gunnedah at the suggestion of long-time firefighter David Moses and said it was a good way to serve his community.
"In someone's darkest hour, we all pull together and do the best we can," Mr Melick said.
A fitter and machinist by trade, he likes getting hands-on with the equipment, and the company's not bad either.
"We have a good group of other firies. We all get on," Mr Melick said.
"It's like a home away from home. If we're not at home, we're here."
At someone's darkest hour, we all pull together and do the best we can.Adrian Melick, Fire and Rescue NSW
Mr Johns was living in Parkes when he joined and said it was a "family tradition" because his great grandfather and grandfather were both in brigades.
His grandfather was a firefighter in Sydney for 40 years and Mr Johns still has his medals and axe. He also has his great grandfather's brass helmet from 1908.
"[It's] a noble thing to do and gives back to the community," Mr Johns said.
"It's a really tangible way to make a difference ... You help someone out, you've made a bad situation better, and I get an immense sense of satisfaction out of having the job done.
"You don't always get good outcomes ... but those things are few and far between."
Mr Gallagher said it was his boyhood dream to become a firefighter.
"I've always loved fire since I was knee-high to a grasshopper," he said.
He originally signed up with the Rural Fire Service in Uralla but changed over to FRNSW in 2008 after successfully competing in the Firefighter Championships.
"[The captain] got in my ear and said, 'We've got a couple of spots open. I'll get you an application' and it sort of went from there," Mr Gallagher said.
He moved to Gunnedah in mid-2018 after hearing good things about the local brigade from good friend and fellow firefighter Daniel Poss who marked 15 years with FRNSW this year.
Mr Gallagher said it "took a bit of adjustment" when he made the move because the Uralla brigade was the primary responder.
He attended anything from headaches to fatal road accidents and he relished the diverse range of skills the incidents called for.
"Some of the stuff Daniel and I have seen over the years ... you wouldn't wish anyone else to see it. It was pretty horrific, some of the stuff we've done," he said.
It's through experiences like this that he has learnt to "get things off your chest".
"That's the best way, to have a yarn about it. That's a big part of the job, a debrief afterwards," he said.
But there were good moments too, and that's what he "misses a lot".
Captain Welch started his FRNSW journey in Gunnedah on August 14, 2009 to "give back to our community and abroad". But he didn't count on finding "family" as well.
"The best thing about the job is the crew, other station crews, and helping people on possibly their worst day," he said.
"The most challenging part is letting the family down. You have to commit and when the call comes in, you run out on moments in family and social occasions that you can't get back."
He became captain in 2017 and plans to stick around "until the day comes and the pager goes off and I decide not to attend".