GRAEME HELLISON left school to become an apprentice motor mechanic at GV Clarke in North Melbourne. After he married his wife Veronica (Ronnie) they decided to move bush to start and bring up their family. They moved to Wemen to do farm work but Graeme ended up driving trucks; initially for Hancock Brothers hauling produce and fuel in an Albion Chieftain and later a TK Bedford.
Graeme later got a job with Tony Audino of Euston carting fruit, wool and fuel interstate in a new GM powered International R190 which, Graeme says;
"was everybody's dream truck in those days!"
Graeme went on to spend three years carting for Allied Freighters in and AB 160 International before starting with Glover Transport carting fuel and refrigerated interstate for the next seven years. He then carted copper and steel out of Shell Harbour for TC Haulage out of Robinsons Illawarra Transport.
After that it was back to produce, primarily potatoes and onions, driving for Kable Bros in the Sydney Markets. Graeme invested in Red Gem Packers and for the next 28 years out of Sydney and the Riverina to South Australia. It was hard but rewarding work.
"We loaded everything by hand and it kept us fit"
Sadly illness forced Graeme to give the road away. However, Graeme did not stop working. His love for trucks and the road saw him helping out his children rebuilding trucks and trailers as required. Graeme never called it work; to him it was always a pleasure. He considered life was an adventure especially as he was always so fully supported by his wife Ronnie and children.
Graeme was well known and respected on the highway and he still enjoys reminiscing about the good old days and the time spent with his mates. It was a time when everybody helped each other out and life long friendships were made. Today Graeme enjoys tinkering with the R190 he has had in his shed for thirty years.