Inducted onto the Wall of Fame at Reunion 2015
John (Jack) Ancich was born in Newtown, Sydney on the 17th May 1926. His family moved to West Hoxton Park where they had a tomato farm and grew vegetables. Jacks lifelong passion for driving started at this time when at age 17 he carted vegetables into the Sydney Fruit Market with his brother Ronnie.
Jack borrowed 400 pounds to buy his first truck and his earliest trucks included a KS5 International, A Commer Knocker and a Diamond T. Jack carted logs during the construction of the Warragamba dam after which he started running general freight on the Hume Highway to Melbourne. In those early days the Hume was a dirt road taking a week to get there and back.
As an owner/operator, Jack was based in Liverpool in western Sydney with his wife Judy and family. This remained his headquarters until he retired.
Jack went further afield, often being away for months at a time, running to and loading out of Perth. In those early days it was dirt from Iron Knob, South Australia to Norseman in Western Australia and when the road was too rough Jack would put the truck, load and all, onto the train at Port Augusta and travel on the Trans Australian Railway to Parkston, Kalgoorlie.
By the late 1960s, Jack was running general freight to north Queensland and, as he had done earlier in his career, delivering fruit and vegetables to the Sydney Fruit Market, this time from Queensland.
In 1970, Jack bought his first Mercedes Benz, a brand new 1418 Mercedes costing $10,800. The Mercedes truck would be Jack’s choice of truck until his retirement, when he later included a 1924 V10 and a 1986 model 2238. In the early 1980s Jack also freighted steel to the Jabiru Uranium Mine in the Northern Territory.
Jack’s extensive truck driving career spanned over six decades and covered every main route of mainland Australia. He completed his last load to north Queensland at 80 years of age. Jack passed away on the 12th April 2012.