Mirani mourns popular truck driver
GAVIN Turner had only been driving trucks for BRW Transport Quarries and Crushing for four days when he was killed as the truck he was driving burst a tyre and rolled on the Peak Downs Hwy on Thursday.
The well-known 61-year-old Mirani grandfather had been travelling to a work site at the time of the crash.
The news shocked the small Pioneer Valley community.
Gavin's oldest brother, David, said he would be remembered as a hard worker, mad-keen fisherman, darts fanatic and devoted family man.
"He has been the jack of all trades," he said.
"Everyone right through from Eungella to Mackay - every shopkeeper, nearly every farmer, anyone that he used to cart deliveries for knew him.
"He was well and truly liked. You couldn't get a better brother."
He said family understood it was a freak accident. Gavin had spent most of his life driving trucks and heavy machinery and was enjoying the new role.
"The front tyre blew
out and that was the end of it," David said about the crash.
"The truck itself was fully roadworthy, in absolutely top condition. It's just an unseen accident."
They are no strangers to loss. Another of the seven brothers was killed three years ago when he was stomped by a bull.
Gavin had worked for BRW since before Christmas, after leaving family business Pioneer Valley Carriers.
His stepdaughter, Sarah Morris, said Gavin and his partner of about 30 years, Debra Morris, bought the business in 1999.
"Mum and Gavin bought their business in 1999, they had to close it down last year because it's just a small business," she said.
"They picked up from all the companies around Mackay and delivered to residents and local businesses.
"He was just always in the community.
"He would drive up the Valley every day, he was always out and about, he was very well known."
Gavin leaves behind another stepdaughter, Kylie, as well as his son Christopher Turner.
Sarah said Gavin had been a father figure to her since she was a young girl.
"He raised me and my sister like his own," she said.
"There has always been Gavin in our life," she said.
"Gavin never said a bad word about anyone, and nobody could say a bad word about him."
He lovedto get out on the water, his brother said.
"It was always our big family time, having a night of fish," David said.
"You'd put a line in his hand and he would sit out in the gutter trying to catch a fish."
The crash on Thursday has again highlighted
the dangers of the Peak Downs Hwy.
In May last year, Nindaroo man Robert Savage, 70, was killed when his truck crashed down an embankment off the highway. He was travelling from Nebo to Mackay when his truck veered off the road.