David Tree and Sam the Koala

For those who haven’t seen this footage yet please have a look at one of the things that has provided a bright spot in the darkness. To David Tree and the other firefighters and animal rescuers – well done and thank you.

To TMZ who mocked the story – Sorry guys, this is neither humorous nor satirical just poor taste. David Tree is an ordinary bloke doing extraordinary things in a horrific situation. I’ve just heard him interviewed on the Neil Mitchell program on 3AW and if it gets posted onto their website I’ll provide a link for people to have a listen.

Update after the comment from Emma Halden.

You can purchase a photo of Sam here and all proceeds go to the Country Fire Authority with which our volunteer firefighters serve.



  1. Blur Ting said,

    February 12, 2009 at 2:08 am

    This video brought tears to my eyes. I read that millions of animals were killed in the inferno. That’s too sad.

  2. Emma Haldan said,

    February 12, 2009 at 2:12 am

    Thanks for spreading this moment of supreme humanity. I hope they do put up the interview, because we need ‘ordinary heroes’ in this world, to remind us what we can do, when we try, and when we have to.

    I am deeply saddened by the posting on TMZ, and at the same time, heartened by the response of their ‘hip’ readers. Tomorrow is payday for me — I’m in the US — and I’m going to see if I can order a picture of Sam, and am working to get my employer to match employee donations to the Australian Red Cross at least, and maybe the RSPCA too.

    As someone on another blog said, you’ve got 300 million friends across the Pacific. We’ll do everything we can. Whatever God you call your own Bless and Keep you and yours.

  3. Loz said,

    February 12, 2009 at 2:25 am

    Yes Blur- there have been millions of animals lost as well as the likely 300 human toll.

  4. Loz said,

    February 12, 2009 at 2:26 am

    Hi Emma and thankyou for the visit and for the kind words. I’ve updated the post to include a link where people can purchase a copy of the photo of Sam. All proceeds from that go to our volunteer firefighters.

  5. Shinade said,

    February 12, 2009 at 6:37 am

    What a disgusting thing for TMZ to do. This is a touching story. I have known many firefighters and when they are up against what they were…something like this moment is truly precious for them.

  6. Romany Angel said,

    February 12, 2009 at 2:35 pm

    That footage just makes my heart swell. How trusting the little fellow is to let David and his crew that close and to then put his little paw in his hand. Poor little fellow was probably so traumatised.

    I saw him on the news tonight and he’s in a sanctuary now with burnt paws. He is in a pen with another koala who keeps cuddling up to him. Stories like this help to take the edge off the pain of the past few days.

    I’ve had his pic on my blog for a day or two but seeing it for real was very special. Thanks Loz.

  7. Real Live Lesbian said,

    February 12, 2009 at 8:34 pm

    So very sad….

    but so wonderful that we’re able to help.

  8. Emma Haldan said,

    February 13, 2009 at 3:42 am

    I ordered my picture of Sam today, and am still working through the paperwork to try and get matching funds for employee donations.

    I personally can’t give much right now — hard times all around, I know — but I can give a little bit over a long time, so I’m going to alternate between the RSPCA and the Bushfire Appeal, and encourage my friends to do the same. Little Sam and wonderfully ‘normal’ Dave are fabulous ways to get their attention and move hearts.

    It’s important to remember, that when this crisis is over, and things quiet down, the people who survived the fire and who fought the fire, are going to start dealing with the trauma. I am SO heartened to see that counseling is already being offered and encouraged, and that there seems to be an awareness of being in there for the “long haul”.

    I once bought a beer in Los Angeles Airport for a lovely man from the Blue Mountains, who was about to make the dreadful mistake of buying an American Commercial beer, when there was a Micro brewery outfit just down the way. Today, my best friend lives in Tassie, so I figure, every two weeks, I’ll take them both to “dinner” every two years!

    Much love, Emma

  9. Romany Angel said,

    February 13, 2009 at 3:11 pm

    I’ve linked to this video Loz so as many people as possible can share in this beautiful moment.

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