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Year: 2013

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Inducted into the Shell Rimula Wall of Fame at ReUnion 2013.

Loal Coughran was born in Lismore, New South Wales, in January 1926 and when he was two he moved to Piggabeen with his family. His father had just purchased a carrying business. Loal was a natural driver from the start. From a young age he would drive his father's truck around Piggabeen picking up local children and taking them to school after which he would attend school himself.

Loal's first major transport job was serving as an RAAF driver for 13 Squadron in Australia and overseas during World War Two.  The experience taught him many driving, mechanical and logistics skills. When Loal  returned home at wars end he married Evelyn Whalan at Mullumbimby in 1947 and worked driving between Murwillumbah and Tweed Heads for Wright's Laundry. The Coughrans then moved to Brisbane where Loal purchased a second hand  1942 Ford truck and began his own carrying business carting produce from the Brisbane Markets all around the Brisbane district.

In 1952 Loal and Evelyn moved to Tumbulgum, New South Wales, where they successfully tendered for the Royal Mail service between Murwillumbah and Brisbane for six nights a week. This was considered a very important contract. At this time south-east Queensland was faced with many severe weather conditions including flooding. Loal received many letters of recognition and appreciation for his efforts to get the mail through. Due to the flooding in Tumbulgum Loal moved to Tweed Heads in 1954 still carrying out the mail service until 1957 when he started a business which included transporting crops, paper waste and general around south-east Queensland and northern New South Wales. The Tweed and Gold Coast Paper Salvage Company was born from his collection of paper for recycling. At one time he had 19 trucks working from Tweed Heads to Coffs Harbour.  The paper was brought to Tweed Heads where it was processed and bundled with, at first, an old hay press.

At the same time as building up the paper salvage business Loal had the local Shell agency as well as being the agent for the South Coast Gas Company. In the mid 1950s he became interested in the surf life saving club and gave up his time to organising and transporting team members, boats, skis and surf boards to carnivals all around Australia. He had a special frame placed on the back of his truck for this purpose. After 17 years in the paper salvage business Loal retired and he and Evelyn moved to Lemon Tree Passage to enjoy retirement. In 1997 Loal Coughran lost his battle with cancer. He is remembered as a great Tweed citizen and an icon of road transport.

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