WELL DONE: On Australia Day the government recognised ‘The Ferret’ with an OAM.
WELL DONE: On Australia Day the government recognised ‘The Ferret’ with an OAM. Carly Morrissey

Special honour for ‘The Ferret’

AFTER being sworn to secrecy for months, The Ferret has finally spilled the beans on his OAM.

It was "about bloody time" joked John (The Ferret) Moran when speaking to Big Rigs about the accolade.

The trucking legend started his career writing a gossip column for a competing title in the 70s, before coming over to Big Rigs.

He is being honoured with the OAM for decades of charity work.

"I can't get over it," he said.

"I think it's great."

The official announcement of this year's OAM recipients was made on Australia Day.

"It's lovely to be acknowledged by my peers and another thing to be acknowledged by the Queen and your country. I'm so pleased, I'm almost speechless."

Moran's iconic Ferret column in 1990 had thousands of readers and helped him establish Convoy for Kids with Dave Gaudron.

He is currently national ambassador for the charity, which has raised more than $6 million for children since it started.

The Ferret is also the co-founder for the Brisbane Convoy for Kids and patron for Convoy for Kids Sydney.

He is a co-patron for Lights on the Hill, the Queensland based memorial for truck and coach drivers and was inducted into the Shell Rimula Wall of Fame at the National Road Transport Hall of Fame in 2002.

The living legend is also a bush poet and wrote A Time to Reflect - Poems of the Highways and Byways in 2003, and From Here to There and Back Again - Fading Memorial and Miles in the Mirror in 2005.

He has also produced two CDs - The Living was Easy in 2003 and Driving and Dreaming in 1995.

The Ferret has many stories from his 40 years of charitable work and at age 81 he is still going strong, travelling to 12 convoys in 2013. He told Big Rigs about the first Convoy for Kids.

"Dave thought we would get about 30 trucks. I put it into my column and by the time the convoy came around we had hundreds of trucks and the picnic in the park became the siege of Logan city," he said.

"It all just turned out great. I never thought it would go this long. Here we are now 23 years on and staring down the barrel of $8 million."

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