Gladstone’s Olympic torcher bearer, Colin Weldon, dies at 89
GLADSTONE has lost one of its long term and prominent residents with the passing of Colin Weldon at the age of 89.
Many people knew Colin as Monty, a nickname he acquired when his father worked on the Monte Cristo cattle station on the norther part of Curtis Island.
He often recalled walking cattle across the Narrows at low-tide.
Born in Rockhampton in 1926, Colin eventually moved to Gladstone with his parents George and Sarah, older brother Ron and younger sister Rita.
Sport played a big part in Colin's life, particularly hockey and tennis, although he was also a handy amateur boxer and rugby league player.
A player and lifetime supporter of the Sparks Hockey Club, Colin was a highly-regarded player on the left wing and for many years was a member of the Gladstone representative hockey team.
Colin married Beryl Power in 1954 and that same year they built a house in Oaka Street which has remained their home for more than 60 years. They raised their two sons, Craig and Brad, and built a wonderful life together.
In 1956, Colin was selected to carry the Melbourne Olympic Torch on its journey through Central Queensland and the medal he received recognising that achievement sat proudly on display. In 1999, Colin took part in a re-enactment of that day when he joined many of his fellow runners from 1956 to run another mile to celebrate the 43rd anniversary of that memorable day.
He was also a long time tennis player, and served as President of the Port Curtis Tennis Association (PCTA) from a number of years in the mid 1970s. This was around the time of the development of the current tennis complex in Glenlyon Street, with together with the hockey fields and aquatic centre provided Gladstone with outstanding sporting facilities.
Colin then took on responsibility for developing and managing the club's bar operations which he did for many successful years. In 1980, his years of dedication and hard work were rewarded with Life Membership of the Port Curtis Tennis Association.
In 1964 Colin joined the Gladstone Harbour Board, now known as the Gladstone Port Authority, and worked there until his retirement in 1991. Initially working at the Auckland Point coal and grain facility, Colin ultimately moved to the Clinton Coal Facility, renamed the RG Tanna Coal Terminal in 1994 in recognition of the contribution of Reg Tanna, the port's General Manager.
At the time of his retirement in 1991, Colin was the Supervisor of the Clinton Coal Facility, at that time the largest coal export facility in the world. He was a much loved member of the Port Authority team and at this retirement was lauded for his dedication and expertise by not only his Port Authority colleagues but also by key Queensland Rail clients and many of the global companies that exported out of the Clinton facility.
Colin is survived by his wife of Beryl, sons Craig and Brad, sister Rita and several nephews and nieces. He will be sadly missed by his family and many friends after a long and fulfilling life spent in Gladstone and will be farewelled on Thursday by his beloved family and friends.