SEPTEMBER 2018 | Wendy Laing
JOHN ARTHUR Loone was born on the 25th of January 1931 in Deloraine. His early years were spent in Launceston where, at school level, he represented the north in football and athletics.
He also attended the Deloraine Catholic school during his primary years and his wife, Leslie recalled that he walked home after school with Patti Pratt.
For a short time, when he was sixteen, he worked at Harris’s in Deloraine which was then was situated next to the British Hotel. From there he joined his father to start Deloraine’s first newsagency. This developed into RH Loone and Sons, and recognising the potential for growth, they moved to where the newsagency stands today. This became John Loone’s focal point for 40 years.
While still in his twenties, John and his grandfather, Roy Loone bought a Bedford bus and the school bus and charter business began. At the tender age 29 he became a Justice of the Peace and served 58 years.
It was not widely known though that he was also a Probation officer for many years.
Football played a large part in his life. John played 234 games and also coached the Deloraine Club. Over time he held the positions of President, Treasurer and Patron. His family remember a game at the Westbury football ground, where he was chased by an elderly lady hitting him with an umbrella when he attempted to stop a fight between players.
John Loone’s contribution and involvement in the community of Deloraine was a remarkable achievement. He was Treasurer of the Deloraine High School Parents and Friends for 28 years and spent 25 years as a volunteer fireman.
When Harris Menswear building caught fire he raced inside to retrieve vital documents. Seconds after he got out, the roof collapsed.
As a Member of the Legislative Council, John Loone worked hard for his electorate. Major achievements included championing the upgrades of Ashley, the Deloraine hospital and cleaning up the Deloraine riverbanks.
He tirelessly lobbied the Government for a grant to start Giant Steps. After two and a half years of planning, preparation, and help with extra funds, Giant Steps became a reality with Mr Loone becoming the first Chairman. Leslie Loone said the Legislative Council members called him a quiet achiever
John Loone passed away on the 3rd of August 2018 aged 87. He had been married to Lesley for almost 64 years and father of Rodney, Liz, Louise and Anthony. He was loved by all his friends and extended family.
Photo | Supplied