Peter Vincent Maloney – or PV as he referred to himself – was the third born to Annie and Thomas Maloney, alongside his sister Patsy (Manning) and four brothers, Des, Chris, Terry and Thomas.
His early schooling was in Bruce, a journey of three miles on the back of a donkey. The donkey kicked him on the chin once and he was unconscious for five days in the Quorn hospital. In 1949 he went to St Francis Xavier Seminary, Rostrevor, and passed the Leaving Certificate in 1953. His father wanted him to study and become a teacher, but he wanted to be a shearer and came back to the farm in Bruce.
Shearing sheep became his profession. He would shear locally around Bruce, Quorn, Carrieton and Eurelia and then venture to the South East leading up to Christmas. He was not the fastest shearer in the district, but a cleaner shearer could not be found.
Whilst shearing for Smiths at their Nackara property, a neighbour, Mick McMahon asked Peter if he would shear his sheep. Not knowing he had a daughter called Mary, he got them done as fast as he could. The following year, however, there was no such rush!
Peter and Mary were married in October 1961 and settled into life on the farm at Bruce. They decided they wanted a big family and from 1963 to 1976 they had nine children – Pauline, Rose, Adrian, Francis, Julia, Anne, Susan, Katrina and Michael.
A very loving father, Peter was tough but fair. When it came to punishment he was the judge and jury, and no appeal was ever upheld. He had high standards and raised his children to work hard to achieve things in life.
Peter always loved playing sport and being involved in a club. He played cricket for Eurelia until 1969, then Quorn for many years. There he coached numerous junior teams, umpired and served as treasurer and president. He played football for Carrieton, then Wilmington. In 1985 he took up bowls in Quorn, serving a period as treasurer and president. He was the inaugural president of the Quorn Probus Club in 1998 where he and Mary made many friends and enjoyed the social outings and holidays.
One of his great loves was cricket and the annual tradition of attending the Adelaide Test match. All holidays to Adelaide revolved around the dates of the Test. Between 1961 and 2018 he did not miss one Test and he loved everything about the oval and the friends and family he would catch up with. For his 80th birthday, Mary and all the nine children attended Sunday’s play and his devotion to the Test captured the attention of Channel 7, which featured Peter and the family on the Sunrise program.
In 1989 Mary and Peter moved into Quorn and he kept running the farm for the next decade until he handed the reins over to Adrian. His involvement did not stop, however, helping when required and offering plenty of advice!
Peter’s faith was always strong and the foundation of his life. He was a member of the Knights of the Southern Cross for 64 years, serving as treasurer of the Carrieton branch for most of that time.
Other community service included sitting on the Wilmington Council, Quorn Area School Council, Quorn Hospital Board, as a Justice of the Peace and with Meals on Wheels. He was awarded the Quorn Community Australian Citizen of the Year in 2004 for his service.
Peter and Mary had a wonderful marriage for 59 years and he was immensely proud of all his grandchildren. He used to say that he was never rich in worldly possessions but he was rich in family.
In 2015 Peter’s run of good health started to deteriorate and he spent the last four years of his life in Flinders House at Quorn.
He impacted people’s lives in many ways. To some he was an experienced and trusted adviser, to others it was his interest in the community with hard work and leadership. Some were familiar with his reminiscing of past events and the people involved or telling a funny story that would have him laughing louder than the members of the audience.
We celebrate a life well lived. We will celebrate each one of those 85 years and be forever thankful that God kept you here with us for as long as he did. Rest easy PV – we will all miss you.
Taken from the eulogy given by Peter’s son, Frank Maloney.
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