The Royal Humane Society of Australia

Press Releases

Annual Bravery Awards Presentation - 20 May 2022


Six people of Queensland will be presented with bravery awards of The Royal Humane Society of Australasia.

on Friday 20 May 2022
at 1.00pm
Balmoral Room
Level 1
Brisbane City Hall

The Society awards – One Silver Medal, Three Bronze Medals and Two Certificates of Merit will be presented by The Right Honourable the Lord Mayor, Councillor Adrian Schrinner

Awards recognized rescues from:

  • a burning house
  • car accidents
  • railway tracks

Members of the media wishing to attend are requested to arrive 15 minutes before the scheduled commencement of the ceremony.

To Receive the Certificate of Merit:

1. JEREMY GARDIOL, Police Officer, aged 38 years

In going to the rescue of a man from a crashed and burning car at Gympie on 6 June 2018.

At 7.10am a driver depressed both the accelerator and brake and proceeded straight through an intersection and his vehicle came to rest on the embankment on the other side. The vehicle then rolled down the embankment on its side with the driver trapped inside.

When Const Gardiol and another Police Officer arrived at the scene the car had caught fire and flames and smoke were sighted coming out of the vehicle’s bonnet. The vehicle was positioned next to an electric power pole and directly under electrical power lines.

As the car filled with smoke Const Gardiol smashed the passenger side window of the vehicle to allow the vehicle’s cabin to vent and the driver to breathe.

Const Gardiol and another Police Officer immediately started to smash the front windscreen with their batons and kicked the windscreen until a hole was made. They then pulled the glass away with their hands to free the trapped driver and finally dragged him from the car through the windscreen.

Const Gardiol suffered cuts from glass imbedded in his hands and suffered smoke inhalation.

The driver was taken to hospital and made a full recovery.

(The other Police Officer involved in this incident received a Certificate of Merit for his actions at a previous investiture)


To Receive the Bronze Medal:

2. CLINT WILLIAM DREW, Police Officer, aged 57 years


In going to the rescue of three people from a crashed and burning car at Palm Island on 27 December 2017.

At 6.30am a car collided and wrapped around a power pole and caught fire.

Snr Const Drew and Const Maestri arrived at the scene and Snr Const Drew jumped onto the rear of the vehicle and was able to extricate the rear seat passenger via the rear window with the help of Const Maestri. They then dragged the man away from the fire and smoke.

Snr Const Drew then walked to the right-hand side of the vehicle and saw that the driver was trapped. Meanwhile Const Maestri saw that there was a third person under the left door panel.

Const Maestri got inside the vehicle and cut the driver’s seat belt whilst Snr Const Drew jumped onto the rear of the car and grabbed the driver’s hand but the Police Officers were still not able to free him.

Emergency services then arrived and Snr Const Drew and Const Maestri continued to assist emergency personnel with the extraction of the driver and the other back seat passenger who had sadly passed away.


To Receive the Silver Medal:

4. MICHAEL FORMICA, Paramedic, aged 47 years, of Gayndah

In going to the rescue of a mother and daughter from their burning home at Harristown on 10 September 2019.

At 4.50pm a candle ignited combustible items in the sun room of a house and the fire quickly spread to the lounge, kitchen and into the roof.

Mr Formica who was nearby saw the smoke and went to the house. He could hear screaming from inside the building and entered the house through the back door and found a woman and immediately took her outside.

The woman told Mr Formica that her 8 years old daughter was still in the house. Mr Formica re-entered the house but it was impossible to see due to the thick black smoke so he retreated back outside to smash a window to let some of the smoke out.

After he re-entered the house Mr Formica rescued two dogs who were hiding in bedroom cupboards and finally found the young girl in the garage. He guided the girl out of the garage and reunited her with her mother.


To Receive the Bronze Medal:

5. AARON KEDWELL, Sales Representative, aged 39 years of Banyo

In going to the rescue of the occupants of a crashed and burning car at Tiaro on 17 April 2017.

At 3.15pm the driver of a vehicle crossed over onto the wrong side of the road and collided head-on into another vehicle. This vehicle caught fire due to damaged fuel lines pumping fuel onto the hot exhaust.

Mr Kedwell whilst travelling on the road saw the accident and stopped to help and saw a man lying on the ground next to the burning vehicle. Mr Kedwell ran over to the man who could not move as his legs were broken. Mr Kedwell could feel the intense heat from the car and dragged the man about 15-20m away and then was assisted by others to bring him to safety.

Mr Kedwell then ran back to the burning car in case there were any other passengers trapped in it but the heat and flames forced him to move away.


To Receive the Certificate of Merit:

6. ANDREW PETRUS, Cleaner, aged 62 years, of Narangba

In going to the rescue of a woman lying on railway tracks at Narangba Railway Station on 11 October 2020.

At 9.30am Mr Petrus stopped at the red traffic lights near the railway station and observed a woman stop on the railway pedestrian crossing directly on the actual rail tracks and sit down.

Mr Petrus quickly parked his vehicle and ran to the woman and knelt down next to her and attempted to communicate with her but the woman gave no response.

Me Petrus said to her that they needed to stand up and move away from the railway line as they were in danger.

Mr Petrus attempted to lift the woman and heard the rail crossing warning bells and lights start to flash. He then dragged the woman off the tracks to an area of safety. Seconds later a freight train came through the crossing.