THE Brolga Theatre in Maryborough has welcomed hundreds of heroes who helped Queensland cope with the chaos unleashed by ex-Tropical Cyclone Oswald.
Fire and Emergency Services Minister Jack Dempsey recognised 262 Queensland Fire and Emergency Services staff and volunteers for their courageous work when disaster struck Queensland's north in January 2013.
The prestigious QFES Commissioner's Medal for Valour was presented to four men - Station Officer Grant Feeney (Gympie), Senior Firefighter Denis Donadel (Maroochydore), Senior Firefighter Matthew Foster (Maroochydore) and Senior Firefighter Tony Wildman (Gympie) - for a fearless rescue mission.
"On the morning of Sunday, the 27th of January 2013, these brave men entered the swollen waters of the Widgee Creek on numerous occasions to rescue two civilians and to attempt the rescue of a third," Minister Dempsey said.
"Despite the treacherous and life-threatening conditions, they placed their lives in danger, disregarding their own safety to save others."
QFES Commissioner Lee Johnson said his team responded to 327 incidents, of which 46 were swift-floodwater rescues, and assisted in the evacuation of more than 1800 people.