AFTER exactly 45 years and one month, Ken Parker has replaced his last brake lining for Lusky Automotive in Sebastopol.
He started with the company – sold by the Lusky family in 2003 – after doing his apprenticeship at engine-maker Ronaldson and Tippett.
“The Lusky workshop was a different place then, really hot in summer, really cold in winter, dusty, dirty. Everything was a bit stricter, as well, but we got lots done.”
He has seen a few changes in his 50 years in the industry, with engines becoming more reliable and parts cheaper.
“Every car used to need the cylinder heads looked at after 80,000km, but now they run to 400,000km without an issue, and by then, everything else is stuffed,“ Mr Parker said.
He said he was retiring because of a “bit of pressure from home”. He will travel to Queensland with his wife to visit two of his grandsons and his brother. There are a few other trips on the cards, with Mr Parker keen to visit New Zealand.
Lusky Automotive kept the farewell low-key at work, but took Mr Parker to dinner on Wednesday night.
Lusky Automotive owner Michael Finn said he wished Mr Parker was 20 years younger.
“He’s got a great work ethic – really old school. I’d keep him around until the 50th anniversary if I could.”