Tom Ryan visiting Coober Pedy in 1983. Tom and his brother Jerry, a brother-in-law Joe Marron and an uncle Mick Ryan came to Coober Pedy in 1930. They were the first deep shaft diggers.
The Ryans and Joe Marron came from Hawker in their nearly new Chevrolet truck with three 44-gallon drums of petrol, a 25-gallon camel drum of water and enough non-perishable food to last them 6 months. The 500-mile trip took 4 days over the rough and winding track.
Unfortunately there were no buyers on the field at the time except for Ernie Reneke whose limit was 50. After a month of hard yakka, all they got for their opal was thirteen quid.