Collision fails to stop Charltons’ hay delivery
NOT even a crash with a six foot kangaroo could stop a father and son from Mardan helping drought-stricken farmers in Queensland.
John Charlton and his son Jack collided with the roo just 200km short of their destination at Dirranbandi in Queensland, damaging John’s Nissan Navara.
He was towing a trailer with 100 bales of hay destined for farmers desperate for fodder as drought gripped their district.
“When we hit the kangaroo I thought, ‘What the hell was that’ but had to concentrate on keeping the car on the road as the bull bar had gone straight through the left front tyre, causing the bonnet to fly up onto the windscreen, blocking my vision,” John said.
The Charltons set off on a 1600km trip from Leongatha, having sourced the hay with the support of the South Gippsland community.
Stranded at Walgett in New South Wales, the Charltons were able to lock the trailer of hay in the yard of the local police station overnight while they stayed at The Gateway Hotel until they came up with a plan.
Fortunately a local policeman lent John his Landcruiser ute so the Charltons could deliver the hay to two families: the Carsons and the Prischettos.
The Carsons have a family sheep farm in Dirranbandi and have been enduring a distressing time since husband Billy fell four storeys from a cattle truck and broke his leg in 10 places several years ago.
The Prischetto family runs Brahman cattle on a small farm and were in desperate need as they had not had any work for more than nine months due to the dry conditions.
The families received 50 bales each, as well as groceries, meat and fuel vouchers.
“We felt satisfied delivering the hay, however due to the accident and the vehicle damage, we didn’t get to have the time we would’ve liked to spend with each of the families, which was disappointing,” John said.
“I embarked on this journey because I had the hay and wanted to contribute to those who were doing it tough.”
John’s Navara was towed from Walgett to Dubbo to be repaired so he could return home. After a few days, father and son drove back, however the car was feeling the pinch by the time they got back to Mardan.
“The car has since been written off, but what’s a story without a little bit of drama,” John said.
All hay was grown and baled on the Charltons’ property.
John thanked the following for their contributions to his hay run: Edney’s Leongatha for providing a full car service before the trip; Nesci’s Transport for their fuel sponsorship; Murray Goulburn Dumbalk for pallet wrap used to wrap the hay trailer; Bairs Hotel; Bendigo Bank staff; Evans Petroleum; Kevin Gardiner Kitchens; Lunds Auto Electrics; Murray Goulburn Leongatha; Numix Concrete; Office Choice Leongatha; Ryan’s Bricks; Sharon Lagden Art; Southern Cranes; Stewarts Tyre Service; The Perrett Group Gippsland; Amy Charlton; Mick and Ann Charlton; Sophie Charlton; Kevin Dowling; Peter Dixon; Ron and Gloria Hayes; Wade and Jesse Jarvis; Phil Johnston; Lynne Nicholas; Kaylene Van Poppel; Matt and Jed Price; Josh and Sarah Thompson; Jackson Whitworth; BJ and Clare Williams; and a special thank you to the Walgett Police Station and The Gateway Hotel, Walgett for all their help and hospitality.
Dirranbandi has a population of around 720 people and is located in south west Queensland, around an hour from the New South Wales border.
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