GRAHAM, Thomas

Thomas Graham Tom's workhorse

Inducted into the Shell Rimula Wall of Fame at ReUnion 2005

Tom Graham came to Australia from New Zealand in 1966 where he had been driving stock and general freight on Commers and AR160 Internationals. On arrival in Adelaide he landed a job driving an ARI 90 Inter  carting sand  for Turin Sand Supplies.

Soon after, he was offered a job in Alice Springs driving roadtrains for Baldocks Transport carting general freight to Tennant Creek and copper dust back to Alice Springs. Phil Hyett was the manager at the time and Co ord Keith the supervisor.

They sent Tom off on his first trip to Tennant Creek with Roy Cooper in a Foden powered by a Gardner. Later, Tom drove the Leyland Buffalo and Leyland Hippo. In 1969 he was offered a job by Dino Bilato driving an R600 Mack and ended up carting gravel for the making of the Booraloola Beef Road. Tom later went to work for Ron and Heather Trezise, in Darwin, driving an R700 V8 Maxidyne called “Sahara”, with a body and 3-dogs, carting sand from Mary River to A.B.M. Darwin. He stayed there until Cyclone Tracey devastated Darwin on Christmas Day, 1974. He stayed on, with Trezise, under hire to the army, doing the clean-up for the Federal Government.

During the 80s, he worked for Jimmy Martin driving a V8 Mack Superliner, running Fleet Express Brisbane to Darwin. He also worked a time for Billy Basket running Toowoomba  to  Darwin. Tom returned to the Northern Territory and drove for D. & N. Livestock and then Pandion Haulage carting N.T.F.S. Alice Springs to Darwin for a while before moving back to Queensland to give up the road. As is typical in the industry, the call of the road became too strong and Tom got a job with Zielkes Transport carting coal with side-tippers for a few more years.

In 1999 he went over to Brambles at Newlands Coal QLD, where he worked, driving one of the most powerful trucks in Australia, a Kenworth C510 grossing 500 tonne, until 2006 when he retired.