Inducted into the Shell Rimula Wall of Fame at ReUnion 2014.
Kerry (Kenworth or KK) O'Connell started his truck driving career driving a rigid Bedford for Schweppes Australia Ltd in 1969. During his time there he graduated to driving the latest 1418 Mercedes Benz semi-trailers. Kerry Kenworth left Schweppes in 1974 and spent the next year running interstate with Visy Board Reservoir for Dick Pratt who had two 1418 Mercedes Benz's on interstate at the time. The late Brian Burke drove the other.
Kerry later drove a single drive International for Norm Kirkman and an 8V71 powered Kenworth SAR for Ted Whitehead. In 1976 he started with Hawthorn Overnight driving both six and eight wheel Kenworths. He stayed on with them when the company became TNT 0vernight Express and then through the seamless transfer to Kwikasair. He was there until 1994 making it nearly 18 years in total. During this time Kerry drove a lot of different trucks including COE, SAR and W model Kenworths, both R and F model Macks, Volvo and Scanias.
Kerry was very active in the industry and more than happy to speak out in support of his fellow drivers. Kerry became one of the founding members of the Transport Workers Union (TWU) Interstate Committee and spokesman on the 1991 blockade at Wodonga where he negotiated directly with Malcolm Fraser. He was also Union Delegate for Linehaul. For the next few years he drove for a variety of truck operators including Fate Express in an S-line rigid and Transtar semi and then for Gary Darlington in a rigid MAN. He was with TOLL when the B-Doubles started. It was during this era Kerry earned the nickname of 'Kerry Kenworth'. He also did stints for Keith Kirkman of lntercapital Express and for Peter Amoroso and John Sperlinga, Primo and Travellos. In 1998 he was first driver employed in Melbourne by Arrows Express. After a few years driving for other companies Kerry went back to Arrow Express where he has been for the past 14 years.
Most of the Kerry's work has been on the MELB-SYD-ADEL run and it is estimated he has clocked up 8 million kilometres.