KIAMA has paid tribute to one of its best-known citizens recently with the death of Colleen Hart, aged 75..
Mrs Hart was probably best-known as the face of Hart’s Garage. She and husband Warren bought the garage from Warren’s mother Hope in 1970. They continued the family legacy through their sons Peter and John and daughter Karen.
Colleen was born to Catherine and Lindsay Hogan in Bemboka near Bega in May 1939 - one of nine children.
The family lived in Gunning for a short time before her father, a baker, moved to Kiama.
Colleen attended Kiama Primary School and Kiama High School before working at Batty’s Habberdashery across from the Fire Station.
She loved music, particularly country and western, and was a talented singer and played guitar with such well-known country icons as Reg Lindsay, Jimmy Little, George Anderson and local legend Paddy Martin.
She met Warren Hart through her brother Barry.
“Dad was one of the few people in Kiama who had a car back then and we’re not sure if mum fell in love with the car, or the handsome young Warren,” daughter Karen joked.
In 1959 Colleen was invited to join Reg Lindsay’s troupe and travel, but instead decided to marry Warren.
They were married on June 4, 1960 and the couple bought a block of land in Antrim Street and built their family home, which they sold to buy the garage.
Her life was built around helping run the garage and raising her family. They enjoyed holidays at Tweed Heads and loved fishing at Kiama Harbour or Bombo Beach.
Colleen also loved the fact their family had continued to grow and loved nothing more than spending time with her eight grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.
“We are extremely grateful for the wonderful messages of love and support we have received from everyone since mum’s passing and it certainly shows the high esteem she was help in the community,” Karen added.