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Year: 2014

14MATTHEWSport 14MATTHEWScharisma

Inducted into the Shell Rimula Wall of Fame at ReUnion 2014.

Michael David Matthews (Claw) started his driving career as a young man with Buntine Roadways and later Finemores. He had lost three fingers when he was a baby but was determined to make a living driving trucks. His first truck was an International Transtar carting produce from the Riverina to both Sydney and Melbourne markets along the infamous Hume Highway. Later trucks included a Diamond Reo followed by a White Road Boss which he used to start in the cattle carting business contracting with both Lewingtons and Finemores. After a long stint with live- stock Claws purchased an R700 Mack truck which he used to haul all around the outback regions of NSW, Qld and NT. During this time he fell in love with the Mack marque and soon upgraded to a second hand Super Liner called 'Charisma' which he fell in love with it. In this he hauled stockfeed and salt for kangaroo shooters.

Dave later moved to Western Australia and found work carrying crushing plants and other heavy earth moving equipment around the outback. He would also follow Sims Metals throughout the bush with their car crusher and later carry scrap for them to the wharves in Bunbury, Fremantle, Karratha and Port Hedland. In the offseason Claw worked the grain belt around the Esperance area. He later worked tippers on some of the biggest projects in remote North West Western Australia including on BHP's rail duplication, the Sino Iron Project, FMG expansion at Christmas Creek and cyclone repairs for Rio Dampier Salt. During the last three years of works, Claw struggled with bladder cancer. Being strong-willed and stubborn, he was determined this would not stop him working his beloved Super Liner and he continued to work throughout his radiation and chemotherapy treatment.

Unfortunately his failing body forced him to retire early. Dave's last trip in his treasured Mack Superliner was with his eldest son Jim to the National Road Transport Hall of Fame museum in Alice Springs in 2013 where 'Charisma' was donated and is on display in his memory. To Claws it was the trip of a lifetime. He lost his battle with Cancer just six months later. RIP David Matthews




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