Inducted into the Shell Rimula Wall of Fame at ReUnion 2005If you’ve driven the highways or dirt roads of Qld and NSW in the past 60 years, odds are you’ll have passed the big green semi- trailers and B-doubles with ‘Frasers’ written across the front. They could be carting anything from sheep and cattle, to pigs, goats, dairy cows or buffaloes. Their home-base is Warwick but you can find a Fraser’s truck pretty much anywhere.
Charlie Fraser finished school at 14 and worked on his parent’s farm at Pratten, near Warwick. He ploughed paddocks, milked cows and trained racehorses. Charlie wanted to buy a truck but didn’t have a bob to spare. So one night he saddled up his pony, put his courage in his top pocket and rode the ten kilometres to his grandfather’s farm to borrow a hundred pounds. His grandfather let the young man sweat overnight but turned up with a hundred pounds in cash the next day.
Within a year of buying his first truck, Charlie had bought another. He worked day and night behind the wheel while Edna took the bookings over the phone. In ten years he accumulated eight trucks on the principle he would never knock back work. In the beginning they carted mostly wood and wheat; but it soon became obvious that livestock was the way to go.
60 years on, there’s hardly an animal Fraser and Sons haven’t carted, and they have some funny stories to tell: of chooks in netted sheep crates, pigs from southern Queensland to Darwin for live export, and dairy cows from Tasmania that had to be off-loaded and milked on the long trip to Bowen in north Queensland.
These days Charlie’s sons are doing business with the children of farmers and graziers he began carting for, back in the 40s. Ross, Les and Peter couldn’t get behind the wheel of a truck fast enough when they left school.