News­pa­per boy re­turns to his route

Arthur Mar­shall re­calls life of ad­ven­tures

Central and North Burnett Times - - OVER 50S - Shirley Way shirley.way@cnbtimes.com.au

AT AGE 78, Arthur Mar­shall has re­turned to his first job – a news­pa­per route.

The Gayn­dah res­i­dent said his first job at age eight was work­ing for his fa­ther, who dis­trib­uted Bris­bane news­pa­pers dur­ing the war.

“At 8.30am I was off to school and fin­ished work at 7pm,” Mr Mar­shall said.

“At the Amer­i­can of­fices in Len­non’s Ho­tel, we’d de­liver about 440 pa­pers – one un­der each door.

“The pa­per was a tup­pence. They would give you a shilling and say ‘keep the change’.

“I learnt it was part of the business to leave it in the till.”

As a boy, he ex­pe­ri­enced the gen­eros­ity of Amer­i­can troops.

“I can re­mem­ber one morn­ing, one of the of­fi­cers said, ‘Do you love candy?’

“I didn’t know what that was, but my fa­ther heard and said, ‘Of course he loves candy’.”

The mem­ory of be­ing loaded with cho­co­lates led him to re­call Vic­tory Day.

“Some Americans asked, ‘Do you want a cone, boy?’”

As the young Arthur de­lighted in lick­ing his dou­ble scoop of ice cream, his dad asked, “Where did you get that?”

The young boy as­sured him he had not taken money from the bank and his dad asked for a lick – but was in­ter­rupted by the Amer­i­can sailor say­ing, “Hey, give that boy back his cone!”

When the fam­ily moved to Lin­dum, news­pa­pers were also de­liv­ered to about 500 In­done­sian troops in train­ing at nearby Fort Lyt­ton, at the mouth of the Bris­bane River.

At age 18 he left news­pa­per routes be­hind to be­come a jacka­roo in Quilpie.

“They were the best two years of my life,” Mr Mar­shall said. “I loved be­ing in coun­try.” A year on the land at Limevale, near Texas, aged five had given him an early affin­ity for the land.

But life in the coun­try took a dif­fer­ent turn when he de­cided to “be­come a cop­per” and found him­self work­ing in Roma, where he met his wife.

A re­turn to Bris­bane led him to join a fi­nance company for 18 months, be­fore be­com­ing a su­per­vi­sor for a clean­ing company.

With an ethos of “treat peo­ple like you want to be treated your­self”, he climbed the ranks to Bris­bane branch man­ager and even­tu­ally to man­ager of the south­ern re­gion – Vic­to­ria, Western Aus­tralia and South Aus­tralia.

Since set­tling in Gayn­dah, the fa­ther of four has joined the Gayn­dah Art Gallery and Gayn­dah Her­itage Rail­way Rail Trail com­mit­tees.

“I’ve al­ways loved art and have got a col­lec­tion at home,” Mr Mar­shall said.

The first pieces in his art col­lec­tion were ac­quired in France, where he met his daugh­ter a year from the date she left Aus­tralia to travel.

“We went to a lit­tle place in France at one of the pubs where lo­cal artists’ works were dis­played on the wall.”

He “got on fa­mously” with a lo­cal artist, from whom he bought eight works, each fea­tur­ing a lit­tle light­house.

As the artist had limited English, Mr Mar­shall never did learn the sig­nif­i­cance of the light­house.

He said the rail trail at­tracted his in­ter­est be­cause of “its 107-year his­tory in Gayn­dah”.

“It’s a memo­rial to the rail­way and what it did for this town and could be made a tourist at­trac­tion.”

Arthur Mar­shall They were the best two years of my life. I loved be­ing in coun­try.

PHOTO: SHIRLEY WAY

READ ALL ABOUT IT: Gayn­dah res­i­dent Arthur Mar­shall has had a life of ad­ven­ture, from news­pa­per routes to Quilpie jacka­roo to keep­ing Aus­tralia clean.

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