Inducted into the Shell Rimula Wall of Fame at ReUnion 2008.
Frank Bourchier grew up in the dairying district of Hill End, Victoria. As a schoolboy he would wistfully watch the log trucks pass by and decided dairy farming was not for him.
At 14, young Frank got a job at a local sawmill and worked in the bush until he turned 17 and he was able to obtain his licence. He then started driving a 1947 Ford, carting timber from Erica to Moe for around seven pounds per week. Frank later went carting logs with an ex-US army Wakeisha and then with a 1948 Federal.
Under Government regulations, logs were carted to Yarragon railhead for transport to Oakleigh sawmills. This issue of rail-transport had come full-circle. Buying one Federal, he was soon to own another two Federals and a Ford-F600 before, after truck driving for nine years, he decided to work tractors in the bush. After two years, Frank was back log-carting, buying a 10-series Dodge in 1959, followed by a new V8 International, then a new 1963 petrol Loadstar V8 International.
1966/67 Frank began a long association with Kenworths, buying an ex-Ansett S-Line Kenworth which he traded on a new W-model in 1971, known everywhere as 'Tonka'. From then to 1995, he purchased another eight Kenworths and an S-Line International. While working up to five trucks at different periods, he set his son up with his own truck. Now living in Damum, Frank's trucks were gradually sold off, with the Kenworth 'Tonka' being retired. Frank took his last load to Benalla in 2001.
Frank's driving career spanned 54 years in the central highlands and east Gippsland forests, over rough dirt and gravel bush roads to sealed highways, carting to mills as distant as Benalla, Nowa Nowa and Geelong. He'd seen crosscut-saws, bullock-teams, single-axle trucks and old jinkers replaced by modern and up-to-date machinery. Frank well deserves his place on the Wall of Fame in Alice Springs.