Warkworth’s (formerly Matakana) Mary McCrae and Warwick Palmer.
Mary McCrae handed over a cheque for $20,000 to Warkworth St John on behalf of her and her late husband, Robert, last month.
Robert passed away in July last year and Mary says St John had always responded to his calls for help.
“First responder Ben Pringle lived across the road from us on Leigh Road, and he was always quick to come over,” Mary says.
Both Mary and Warkworth St John Area Committee chair Dr Warwick Palmer are determined to ensure the money is spent locally.
Warwick says St John is fortunate to enjoy an enormous amount of goodwill in the district.
He says the donation is especially appreciated this year, as Covid-19 has tightened belts around the country, meaning less money for St John.
Meanwhile, after 36 years as a GP in the area, Dr Warwick Palmer (now semi-retired), is the new Warkworth St John Area Committee chair.
He has been a part of the committee for five years and has taken a particular interest in growing St John’s cadet programme.
He was himself in the cadets as a young man living in central Auckland.
Warwick says his core focus in the new role will be to support the ambulances to provide as efficient a service as possible.
Having worked alongside St John paramedics throughout his career, he is familiar with the challenges that ambulances face in maintaining a timely response while travelling long distances.
“We will be keeping an eye on it,” he says.