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Hero firefighter ‘still shell-shocked’ after watching his own home burn down

Image: The Daily Telegraph/Jeremy Piper

A hero volunteer firefighter says he’s “still shellshocked” after watching his own home burn down.

RFS Deputy Captain Steve Douglas had been fighting the bushfires since mid-November and was prepared when the Gospers Mountain blaze bore down on his property at Dargan.

He had generators, pumps and hoses ready at hand but tells Alan it was time to take his own advice.

“I think I’m lucky to be alive because I was there right until the fire hit my property.

“I just had to make a decision to leave. I’ve told people for decades, nobody’s house is worth your life.”

Almost two months on, the 70-year-old says he’s still coming to grips with the fact he’s lost everything.

“It takes a little while to realise the extent of what you’ve lost. It takes a while to realise you’ve lost everything.

“Incredibly generous people give you a hand and… sometimes the generosity just brings you to tears.

“We’re still just sort of shellshocked, even this long afterwards.

“You wake up and it’s kind of like being on holidays and never being able to go home.”

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