Sunday History Photo. NSW

Submitted: Sunday, Jan 11, 2009 at 01:34
ThreadID: 65004 Views:6240 Replies:8 FollowUps:4
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Here’s a great Aussie we loved to hear about on the radio and read about him in the newspapers
Gelignite Jack Murray 1907 - 1983 - It just isn't possible to recount the life story of a man like Gelignite Jack,
Jack wasted no time in his life. From a young charismatic man who was a cyclist, champion amateur wrestler, pioneer water-skier, race car driver and all round sportsman to a successful business owner. His celebrity status rose with his larrikin antics during what is still considered to be one of the toughest rally races, the Redex Trials. He captured the hearts and minds of an Australian public that had been battered by the Depression and World War II and he reminded them of the lighter side of life. In the 1953 Redex Trial he rolled his Chrysler Plymouth.1953 may not have been his year but Jack made certain that 1954 belonged to him and so in a shower of gelignite explosions, good humour and gritted determination he set out to win. Jack Murray and his co-driver Bill Murray made the 18 day endurance race look like a picnic, while Jack earnt himself his nickname by blowing up a dunny and tossing sticks of Gelignite out the window of his Ford V8 to liven up his entrance to towns.
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In 1980 Jack's right leg was amputated above the knee and he spent 12 weeks learning to walk again. But in Jack fashion he handled it with dignity, determination and of course a sense of humour. A friend offered him a prosthetic leg from America, the best in the world, Jack responds "No, maybe not. That'd be left hand drive and the bloody thing would want to walk on the wrong side of the road." Jack didn't wallow or reminisce in the past he spoke of his future plans, like entering the 1982 Peking to Paris, "I might choose an automatic, though". Drive, race and water-ski Jack Murray continued to do it all.


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Reply By: dedabato (SA) - Sunday, Jan 11, 2009 at 01:51

Sunday, Jan 11, 2009 at 01:51
Hi Doug & Dusty,
Thanks " yet again " for a nice reminder of yester years.
Keep it coming mate
Cheers
Steve




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Reply By: Member - Robert M (QLD) - Sunday, Jan 11, 2009 at 02:19

Sunday, Jan 11, 2009 at 02:19
Gidday Doug, good post, reminded me of a book I read a few years ago called "Dust and Glory" by Evan Green, it was fiction based on Jack Murray's exploits during the Redex Trials. The main part I remember about the book was his water skiing with a character named Carl on Darwin Harbour who I think lived at Doctor's Gully.
Rob Mac
AnswerID: 343648

Reply By: SPRINT-GTO - Sunday, Jan 11, 2009 at 07:09

Sunday, Jan 11, 2009 at 07:09
I think his old Ford "The Grey Ghost" is still around possibly in a museum or restored, but I am unaware of its actual wherabouts!!
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Reply By: Member - Kevin J (QLD) - Sunday, Jan 11, 2009 at 07:29

Sunday, Jan 11, 2009 at 07:29
The 'Grey Ghost' is at Monty's A1 Used Cars at Glenmorgan - west of Dalby - and I am told still participates in various rallies. Looks as good as ever.
I have some photos of it taken last October if I can work out which file they are in.

Kevin J
AnswerID: 343652

Follow Up By: Trevor R (QLD) - Sunday, Jan 11, 2009 at 07:55

Sunday, Jan 11, 2009 at 07:55
Thanks Kevin, I have seen that and other cars recently on my rounds and couldn't work out where it was. It is a great museum well worth a stop if you are in the area.

Well done Doug, great reading for a "whipper snapper" like me, who was not aware of this "character" and his exploits.

Regards, Trevor.
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Reply By: Member - DAZA (QLD) - Sunday, Jan 11, 2009 at 07:54

Sunday, Jan 11, 2009 at 07:54
I saw Jack when I was a kid, when they were setting off from the
Brisbane Exhibition or Show Grounds, on one of his Redex Trials,
I was one of many kids who got an Autograph from him, he allways
found time to talk to his fans,

Thanks Doug

Daza
AnswerID: 343658

Follow Up By: Member - Kevin J (QLD) - Sunday, Jan 11, 2009 at 08:09

Sunday, Jan 11, 2009 at 08:09
Found the photo. Resized and stored. Now how to upload. Have tried a couple of times to no result. What the!!

Kevin J
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Follow Up By: Member - Kevin J (QLD) - Sunday, Jan 11, 2009 at 08:31

Sunday, Jan 11, 2009 at 08:31
Again!!!Image Could Not Be Found
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Reply By: Member - Footloose - Sunday, Jan 11, 2009 at 08:27

Sunday, Jan 11, 2009 at 08:27
Thanks, Doug.
The Tedex Trial Lives on !

Here's a pix of one of the competitors.
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AnswerID: 343661

Follow Up By: Member - Footloose - Sunday, Jan 11, 2009 at 08:28

Sunday, Jan 11, 2009 at 08:28
REDEX !! Sorry guys.
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Reply By: Member - Oldbaz. NSW. - Sunday, Jan 11, 2009 at 11:32

Sunday, Jan 11, 2009 at 11:32
Thanks Doug, good stuff, readers with an interest in those early
trials will find a DVD around with great footage of the action.
Not sure of the name of it, I found it at the local library, but well
worth the effort if that is your scene.......oldbaz.
AnswerID: 343699

Reply By: Member - Kevin J (QLD) - Sunday, Jan 11, 2009 at 11:33

Sunday, Jan 11, 2009 at 11:33
Thank you Doug T for all the great memories you are bringing back through Sunday History Photos.

On the aviation side of things my sister and BIL were in Darwin to witness the arrival there of the RAAF Hercules for the very first time. Not realising that the crew were in close proximity my sister made the comment - " My. Aren't the wheels close to the ground" Meaning rather that the fuselage was lower than most aircraft . The pilot turned to her and said " Madam I would bl...dy well hope so"

I was on site to see the first Super Conny (Constellation) land on the new strip in about 1958 ??? Looked for all the world like a racing greyhound.

You have me chasing around in the photo albums now so thanks for the memories.

Kevin J
AnswerID: 343700

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