Our Priceless Past: Story of Mrs Karron Hunt
"I HAVE many albums of the photographs I've taken over the years. I've had a camera since I was 13 years old,” says Mrs Karron Hunt.
While showing us the many photos of her bowls days, she spoke of her biggest achievement in 2005, when she came first in Queensland. Travelling all over the state, Mrs Hunt won the Port Curtis District Singles eight times, Pairs seven times and Fours four times. She won Championship Singles 11 times, Pairs six times, Triples four times and Fours eight times. A founding member of the Alumina Bowls Ladies Club at Barney Point, Mrs Hunt also coached there. She prefers playing more than watching. "I'm a bit of a fault picker,” she said. "I tell them what they're doing wrong.” Karron still helps there with open days and is also a member of the Gladstone Bowls Club.
Born in the Gladstone Hospital, then on Central Lane, Karron lived in Miriam Vale on a big property with her parents Phyllis and Harry Dahl. One of eight siblings, of four boys and four girls, Selwyn, Ellis, Iris, Sybil, Ross, Jennifer and Ian. Whenever there were chores, the boys were outside with the cattle and the girls were house cleaning inside. Karron's mother and father grew tobacco and raised cattle. In the tobacco season, they were always out in the fields, coming out with a good tan. Between the tobacco seasons, they went to Round Hill, Seventeen Seventy, where they had a holiday house and went fishing. "The girls fished on the beach, while the boys went out with our father on the boat and fished,” she explains.
Karron went to Miriam Vale State School, with small classes. The Principal said if a hundred students came to school, they would all get a holiday. It took a while, but it finally happened. Karron then went on to St Faith's School for Girls, boarding at Yeppoon, for her secondary schooling. She was put into her sister's class because there weren't enough students for her own class. After finishing school, her brothers stayed to look after the property and Karron moved to Gladstone. She started finance work at Friends Department Store when she was 16 years old. Karron stopped working to raise her children and after they grew up, she worked at Rockmans' Gladstone Valley store.
While dancing at the local balls, Mrs Hunt has won Miss Miriam Vale, Miss Gladstone and Miss Tannum Sands. The only music at the balls was provided by a drummer and her sister Sybil, who played the piano.
Karron married Godfrey Albert (Bert) Hunt at St Saviour's Church on Auckland St in 1960. Sadly, Bert passed away from a heart attack while playing bowls. They had three children - Gregory, Russell and Robyn, as well as seven grandchildren and one great grandchild. Their sons work as electricians at the NRG Gladstone Power Station, and their daughter works in Benaraby, as a Justice of the Peace (JP).
Mrs Hunt has also volunteered to make trauma teddies for the Australian Red Cross. Her aunt had taught her to sew when Karron was nine. As the years went on, the trauma teddies have reduced in size and Karron still has a collection of all the various dimensions of the bears.