Newspaper article The Northern Star (Lismore, Australia)

Mr 'Fix It' Left a Rich Legacy Behind

Newspaper article The Northern Star (Lismore, Australia)

Mr 'Fix It' Left a Rich Legacy Behind

Article excerpt

Byline: Hamish Broome

IN HIS younger days he was known as "a kid who could fix anything" and from those humble beginnings Alec Marsh built a landmark Lismore business over more than three decades.

The much respected founder of Ongmac Trading will be remembered at a funeral service this Saturday morning after passing away on Monday, aged 67, after a two-year battle with cancer.

Mr Marsh's public life is in many ways defined by the Ongmac success story, but his journey started years before.

Born in Essex, England, in 1948 Mr Marsh emigrated with his family to a new life in Devonport in Tasmania when he was 10.

The family had a rudimentary existence, scrimping cash and coins into cookie jars for food, rent, and electricity. It was the belief in a better life that pushed the young Alec to always expand his horizons.

He was, before anything else, an adventurous spirit who loved British motorcycles.

In his early 20s, he set out on a six-month motorcycle journey around Australia - which he loved so much he did it twice.

Horizons expanded, life eventually led him to move to Sydney to find work as a mechanic.

According to son Dean Marsh, Alec's first boss Steve Lovaz said he was unique - a freckly kid from Tassie who could fix or build anything armed with just a welder and a grinder - despite having no formal training and only basic schooling.

Alongside his mechanical talents he also had a nose for business.

While in Sydney he had become an expert with the notorious Leyland P76, the tragically defective Australian car.

When Leyland went broke, Mr Marsh bought all the Leyland parts from the factory before a few months later they realised they needed parts to meet warranty claims on defects, so he sold them all back - at double the price. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed


An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.