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Year: 2013








 


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


Kevin Bonner was born in Lismore, Victoria in April 1945 just as World War Two came to an end.  His family moved from Derrinallum to Camperdown in 1950 just in time for young Kevin to start school. Kevin grew up and spent his entire working life and still resides in the area.  Kevin entered the road transport industry carting timber at the local hardware store. In 1965 he was called up for National Service. On completion of that service in 1967 he returned to Camperdown and decided to buy his own truck. With just  $516 to his name he purchased a Ford F600 tray truck for $500 and started carting hay throughout the district. There was no mechanical assistance in those days and it was back breaking work loading and unloading by hand. Never-the-less there was plenty of demand for Kevin's truck and he soon had the truck paid off. In 1971 Kevin married his wife Judy and they had a son, Steven, and a daughter, Michelle. Judy maintained the office and the home.

As the business grew Kevin expanded his business into tipper haulage carting gravel locally. During the harvest season he hauled peas from the south western district to factories in Melbourne, Victoria and to Millicent in South Australia. The business eventually expanded to include fertilizer, grain, gypsum and lime haulage and all sorts of bulk commodities throughout Victoria and interstate for local farmers and stockfeed mills
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Like most road transport operators of the day Kevin spent much of his time away from home driving the truck to earn a living and support his family. He travelled all over Victoria and southern New South Wales, particularly up and down the Hume and Princes Highways.  He became a well known and respected operator. Over the years Kevin owned dozens of trucks in various truck and dog, and B-double combinations including Nissan UDs and Macks. To this day Kevin harbours a 'soft spot' for the  Nissan UD truck which, he maintains put him on his feet and gave him a financial head start in the industry.

Kevin's business continued to grow mostly around the agricultural industry with the cartage and distribution of fertilizer becoming the main stay of the business. In 1986 the business changed from being an owner operator entity to became a company. Bonner Transport Pty Ltd was formed.  Kevin, and Judy and several staff operated from Bonner's  Camperdown depot.

In 2005 Kevin's son Steven took over the business.  Kevin has not given up the road entirely. He had always enjoyed truck driving and catching up with a few old mates along the road and still does to this day. In 2013 Kevin enjoys a mix of truck driving ocassionally, to give Steven a hand as needed, and caravanning trips around the country as a 'Grey Nomad'.


 









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