KEATING, Kenneth "Ken"

Kenneth Graham Keating (Ken) was born in Bendigo in 1936. He married Dorothy Brereton (Dot) in 1958. Ken’s involvement in road transport started in 1955 working for his brother Ray on furniture removals. He later worked with Milikin’s transport running Bendigo – Melbourne daily with fresh eggs in a 1956 cab-over S Model Bedford.

Ken’s first truck was a new 1957 Bedford fitted with a furniture body which he primarily used for household removals on local as well as from Bendigo to Melbourne and Sydney. After that he purchased a 1960 WC White double deck livestock truck which he operated throughout Victoria and NSW for various Agents. He later drove for Streets Ice cream in a 1961 Commer truck and refrigerated semi van with brine tanks down the centre of trailer.

In 1967 Ken became more involved with interstate transport. He set up ‘Zurcas Trucking Co’ to service local fuel deliveries and interstate and export fruit markets. His trucks of choice were International R190 and R200s. In 1969 Ken bought the Geoffery Thompson Fruit Packing Company’s only truck - a Mercedes 1413 which he used to deliver fruit to Melbourne and Sydney markets. The business expanded rapidly and within a year Ken had purchased four 1418 Mercedes Benz trucks and established depots in Melbourne and Sydney with agents in Brisbane and Adelaide. A fleet of Scania LB80, 110, 111, 141 with 20 Fruehauf trailers soon followed. A team of local hauliers delivered local produce.

Ken was involved with the 1981 BP commercial vehicles economy run, driving 1980 Scania LKT141 from Melbourne to Sydney. In 1982 Ken and Dot established any Ken Keating Freight Lines Pty Ltd. It serviced Melbourne to Shepparton daily with refrigeration and general freight. He also ran an intrastate furniture removals service.

In 2016 the company is still growing with all Kens family including his four children, involved in the business. Keating Freight Lines currently has three generations working side by side as well as a staff of 30 people. Keatings operate a fleet of 21 Vehicles comprising of B-Double, singles and rigids. Ken’s aspiration is advise where needed. At 80 years of age he wants to see the business name continue with his sons at the helm.