Farewell to The Ferret

By: Greg Bush, Photography by: Greg Bush

John ‘The Ferret’ Moran, the former interstate truck driver, gossip columnist, poet and co-founder of Convoy for Kids, has passed away

Farewell to The Ferret
Well-known road transport identity John 'The Ferret' Moran passed away in July.


John Moran OAM, better known as ‘The Ferret’, passed away on July 28 in Queensland after a long battle with non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. He was 88.

Moran began driving trucks in the late 1950s at age 23, carting pineapples out of Yeppoon in Queensland. He drove for a number of companies during his career, finishing up at Brambles Tanker Division.

From the late 1970s, Moran became a familiar name throughout the road transport industry through his magazine gossip column in the now defunct Truckin’ Life magazine, earning him the nickname of ‘The Ferret’.

The Ferret at the 2015 Lights On The Hill Memorial Convoy.

However, it was his co-founding with truck driver David Gauldron of the original Brisbane Convoy For Kids in 1989 that started a new chapter in Moran’s life.

He continued to be an important figure in the Convoy for Kids movement. He was a life member and patron for the Convoy For Kids (Sydney), and co-patron, along with the late Slim Dusty, of the Lights On The Hill Memorial at Gatton, Qld.

On receiving his Order of Australia Medal (OAM) in 2014, Moran said he never realised that his continuous work with fundraising activities would lead to the honour.

"I’m just stoked," Moran told Owner//Driver after receiving his medal. "You never get out of the bed in the morning saying ‘I’m going to be a hero today’, these are just things that happen to you through your life."

Moran was inducted into the Shell Rimula Road Transport Wall of Fame in 2002.

Over the years, Moran has embraced bush poetry, writing books including A Time To Reflect and From Here To There And Back Again. He has also recorded and released two CDs.

Despite his advancing years, Moran continued to play a part in the Convoy For Kids movement. In 2013 he attended his first i98FM Camp Quality Convoy, admitting he was "gobsmacked" at the huge support the Illawarra-based event attracts. He was a guest of honour at the Putty Road Memorial Service in 2014.

A private funeral service for John Moran was held on August 6.

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