Inducted into the Shell Rimula Wall of Fame at ReUnion 2005Vern Mildren was born in Corryong in 1946 and helped his family with their trucking business during his school years. He left school at 15 and had several jobs before qualifying as a boilermaker and automatic welder. He began his truck driving career with Reg Cook at Walwa in a Leyland and later drove log trucks for Ken Wilson.
Vern moved to Albury in 1976, after he married Noelene, and they purchased their first truck, a 1418 Benz. During the next ten years he did interstate work with G88 and F 10 Volvos, a Mack Cruiseliner and an SAR Kenworth.
In 1986 Vern fitted a Palfinger crane onto the SAR and began doing local deliveries for Nu-Steel Kit Homes and Lysaght. As the work increased along with the demand for truck mounted cranes, Vern’s business also grew. In 1994 Vern and Noelene formed their company, Noelvern Transport Pty Ltd, and today have a fleet of nine trucks and employ eight drivers. Their fleet consists of Kenworths, Volvos, DAFs and a Sterling. Their main contracts are with Bluescope Lysaght in Albury delivering steel building products throughout north-eastern Victoria and southern NSW and with One-Steel Metaland in Albury delivering steel products. They also deliver timber house frames and roof trusses to the surrounding district.
Vern’s motto is ‘to provide excellent service in a safe environment’ and he certainly has a reputation for doing that. He estimates that he has driven nearly seven million kilometres and has never had an accident. He was the Driver of the Year for Natroad in 2001 and the ATA Driver of the Year in 2002. As Driver of the Year he participated in the World Reverse Record from Gunnedah to Tamworth in 2002.