Meat man

Kar­ratha old salt leav­ing towm

Pilbara News - - Front Page - Ali­cia Per­era

With more than 30 years man­ag­ing a su­per­mar­ket meat counter, mon­i­tor­ing wa­ter me­ters and car­ing for Pil­bara birdlife, lo­cal char­ac­ter John Rose has cer­tainly made an im­pres­sion dur­ing his time in Kar­ratha.

In a town where few res­i­dents stay for long, Mr Rose carved out a niche as the meat man­ager of Kar­ratha Coles for 30 years be­fore pack­ing up for semire­tire­ment with his wife in Wa­roona on Fri­day.

Mr Rose first came to town with his fam­ily to take up the Coles meat man­ager po­si­tion only three months af­ter the su­per­mar­ket had been built.

He has fond mem­o­ries of his time in the Kar­ratha store, which for some time was one of only four Coles su­per­mar­kets na­tion­wide per­mit­ted to make their own sausages, al­low­ing Mr Rose and his col­leagues to do­nate meat for var­i­ous com­mu­nity events and even, on one mem­o­rable oc­ca­sion, make green sausages for St Pa­trick’s Day.

“Peo­ple ate them be­cause I cooked them out the front … they only had green dye, which is nat­u­ral, and they were re­ally green,” he said.

“That went over like a sen­sa­tion.”

Mr Rose went into semi-re­tire­ment af­ter 30 years and one month with Coles, but was soon lured back to the work­force as the only wa­ter me­ter reader for the City of Kar­ratha area. It was a po­si­tion Mr Rose called “the best job in the world” for its abil­ity to take him all over the Pil­bara, in­clud­ing to na­tional parks and gorges.

“I know where ev­ery hid­den wa­ter me­ter is — (I’m) one of about six peo­ple who know where ev­ery wa­ter me­ter is in the whole of Kar­ratha,” he said.

“As you walk along you meet peo­ple with their dogs and peo­ple used to in­vite me in for cof­fee and cake — and you see all kinds of crazy things.”

Mr Rose said he would most miss the “iconic peo­ple” and the lifestyle of the Pil­bara.

He plans to spend his time in Wa­roona pur­su­ing his pas­sions of gar­den­ing and breed­ing birds.

Pic­ture: Ali­cia Per­era

John Rose is leav­ing Kar­ratha af­ter more than 30 years liv­ing and work­ing in the Pil­bara.

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