Anyone who has crossed paths with Edwin John ‘Clarky’ Clark over the years knows a thing or two about the rules of life according to Clarky.
1. You have to work hard, nothing is owed to you. 2. Take pride and show respect. 3. Family is everything.
A father of five, grandfather of 23 and great-grandfather of 16 and counting, Clarky is the patriarch of a strong family legacy.
Starting work for his father at 14 and taking over the family business after his father’s passing, Clarky has had a long and varied career from blacksmithing, plumbing, undertaking (yes, really), hospitality management and even local council representation.
Growing up in Thursday Island (TI), Clarky eventually found himself working in TI as the Port Supervisor for Ports Corporation Queensland (PCQ) over 20 years ago.
In 2006, Clarky and his wife Cath moved to Weipa, establishing himself as the face of PCQ and then NQBP not only with port stakeholders but also throughout the wider community. Always willing to lend a hand, Clarky has cooked thousands of sausages during the annual Weipa Fishing Classic and has presented many sponsorship awards and cheques to community groups.
Outside of work, Clarky’s passion for his family and the broader community has always been evident.
Retiring to Cairns with his wife Cath and grandson Junior, it’s the lifestyle of Weipa Clarky will miss.
“I’ve loved my job here in Weipa,” Clarky says.
“I will really miss the wonderful lifestyle here.
“The boating, the fishing, the camping at my hut on the Wenlock River, there really is nothing like it.”
When asked if he sees himself as a role model, Clarky modestly says no, but it only takes a closer look to see the positive influence he instils in those around him.
“My son Ed has recently moved permanently from Prince of Wales (in the Torres Strait) to Weipa, taking up a job with Goodline (Weipa’s largest construction company). He’s a good, reliable worker and very skilled,” Clarky says.
“Because Ed is now going to be based in Weipa, I will be back to visit as often as I can,” he says.
So don’t be surprised if this isn’t the last we see of Clarky yet!
All the best, Clarky, you’ll be missed.