DINGWALL, Ron

03_dingwall_ron_1 03_dingwall_ron_3

Inducted into the Shell Rimula Wall of Fame at ReUnion 2003.

Ron went to work for Len Tuit when he turned 15 years old.  He loaded and serviced trucks and semi-trailers for the freight and mail runs between Alice Springs and Darwin.  He recalls they would have one semi backed up to the goods shed Saturday afternoon loading perishables to leave Darwin that night.

At around 6pm on Saturday evening the Overlander coach came in from Darwin and Rex and Ron stayed up most of the night getting it ready to leave Sunday morning, after which they would load a trailer full of mail from the train for the main freight truck to leave Sunday afternoon.  Ron credits Len Tuit for teaching him how to drive.  They had to drive the third trailer out through the hills to connect to the main truck as it did not have the power to pull three trailers through the hills.

Truckies of the day had to feed themselves, cooking on the side of the road, as there were few, if any roadhouses.  Normally Ron cooked his steak on an old Chevrolet hubcap or even the blade of his shovel.  On one trip between Adelaide and Darwin he was asked to give two young English ladies a ride.  Keen to impress one of the young women Ron went to the extreme length of investing in a new frypan and two plates.  Poor Ron was genuinely surprised to find she was far from impressed when he cooked up some nice juicy steaks for breakfast one morning, cut fresh from his very own roadkill from the night before.  They must have sorted their differences. They now have three grown daughters and live happily in the USA.

03_ron_dingwall_truck