Ex-station owner had real passion for Pilbara
A former long-term resident of Millstream Station who wrote a book on the history of the area and remained passionate about the Pilbara all his life, died last month, aged 95.
Doug Gordon owned and managed the Millstream pastoral property with his brother Stuart from 1954-1964, inheriting it from his parents in the days before it was part of Millstream-Chichester National Park.
He wrote a book of North West memoirs called The West Pilbara: Sail and Teams to Bulk Carriers and Bitumen, and a pictorial map of Millstream he drew aged about 12 can still be seen at the old homestead at the national park.
Family friend and former sonin-law Ross Newman gave the eulogy at Mr Gordon’s funeral in Geraldton on February 28 and said Millstream had always been a “beloved” place for Mr Gordon.
“For Doug, and later his own children, this was the ultimate playground — with freshwater streams, lush gardens and towering date palms set amid the harsh beauty of the Pilbara,” he said.
Born on a station in Broken Hill, NSW in 1921, Mr Gordon moved to Millstream as a child when his parents bought the station from the Cookson brothers.
He moved back to Millstream after finishing school, and again after serving with the RAAF in World War II, and he and wife Mildred raised their children on the property.
Mr Gordon and his brother managed the station for a decade before selling to the Kennedy family in 1964 and moving to the Mid West, and it became a national park in 1982.
He was also an active member of the Pilbara community who ran a Roebourne general store and a Wittenoom butcher’s shop, was a judge at North West horse race meetings, served on regional road boards, and was a member of Freemason’s Fortescue Lodge and Harding Lodge.
Doug Gordon and daughter Sue Mitchell at the Harding Lodge 125th Anniversary Ball in 2014.