Passionate paramedic recognised in awards

Peter “Monty” Montgomery will be awarded a Ambulance Service Medal in the Australia Day honours. Picture: Emma Reeves d413998
Peter “Monty” Montgomery will be awarded a Ambulance Service Medal in the Australia Day honours. Picture: Emma Reeves d413998

Being able to support people in crisis resonated with the Irish-born Edgewater man who started as a St John volunteer in Tom Price and later Two Rocks.

Having worked on the railways, on North Sea fishing trawlers, as a truck driver and scuba diving instructor in Greece, the new role was life changing.

Colleagues quickly noted Monty’s ‘genuine compassion, empathy and sincere interest’ in his patients, their friends and relatives, which was reinforced by many commendations from the public.

Over the years, he has mentored junior officers, been a trainer and on-road tutor and helped country volunteers navigate the metropolitan hospital system.

His skills, mentoring and encouragement of others was recognised with an Ambulance Service Medal (ASM) in the Australia Day Honours List.

Surprised and honoured, Monty said he appreciated the recognition.

‘It’s a very satisfying job, a great organisation to work for and there are lots of opportunities to do different things,’ he said.

Lack of first-aid skills to help a badly injured workmate on the railways at Tom Price in the 1980s inspired Monty to become a St John volunteer.

Volunteering whet his appetite to become a career ambulance officer, which led to various training and operational roles.

Much of his on-road career has been at outer metropolitan depots including Osborne Park, Morley, Two Rocks, Merriwa and now Joondalup.

‘You never know what’s coming on any particular day,’ said Monty, who is used to dealing with ‘the whole gamut’ of emergencies.’I’ve looked after an 18-day-old baby and a 102-year-old,’ he said.

‘It can be arduous, night shifts are fatiguing and it takes a lot from you but returns a lot more.

‘The job satisfaction has to be something you would not get from most other forms of employment. You can hold your head with pride if someone asks what you do.’