Alain Henderson has been inducted into the Longreach Hall of Fame.
Alain Henderson has been inducted into the Longreach Hall of Fame. Craig Warhurst

Lovable Hendo is honoured

KNOWN as Hendo and loved by many, Gympie’s livestock industry icon Alain Henderson has been inducted into the Honour Rolls of Unsung Heroes at the Longreach Hall of Fame.

Nominated by his daughters Gai and Julieanne without his knowledge, Alain said he was “very, very honoured” to have been accepted.

“I thought it was very, very big of the board of directors for accepting me. Not too many fellows from the coast (Alain retired to Rainbow Beach) get a mention in the Hall of Fame.”

In their submission to the Hall of Fame, Gai and Julieanne virtually told their father’s life story.

We do not have the room to repeat even half, let alone every one of Alain’s accomplishments, but suffice to say that his contributions to the livestock industry and charities over the decades has been enormous.

He particularly enjoys telling the story of refereeing the international touring rugby league side when Central Queensland played New Zealand in Rockhampton – and not because he is only the second person from Gympie to have the honour – Frank Cartwright was the first.

It is because that at the time the biggest news/scandal in the world was the Profumo Affair and there wasn’t a paper to be found without Christine Keelor featuring on the front page.

“Because we beat the touring team 15–10, the Rockhampton Bulletin (a sister paper to The Gympie Times) ran us on the front page.”

He’s still quite chuffed about that even after all these years.

Alain’s lifetime in livestock included commentating at agricultural shows – his name is synonymous with the Gympie Show’s ring events.

He also commentated at campdrafts, picnic race days, Pony Club, Working Dog Trials including the first state of origin between Queensland and New South Wales at Widgee and two Australian show jumping championships held in Gympie.

“That was quite an honour for Gympie and was organised through Gene Barker.”

Alain is still patron of the Kia Ora Pony Club – another thing in which he takes great pride.