At 21 years old and living in Sheffield, Caleb Dover, is a proud third-year apprentice working at Latrobe's Midland Tractors where he started his apprenticeship in 2018 after finishing Year 12.
Mr Dover visited the Tasmania's Ulverstone Show as a boy, sparking an interest in machinery that would see him forge a career in spare parts and earn the title of 2021 Australian and New Zealand John Deere Parts Apprentice of the Year at the inaugural John Deere Technician Awards.
"As a child, my dad took me to the local agricultural show where I vividly remember being intrigued by all the old engines on display," he said.
"Dad encouraged me to approach the men who were showing the machinery and have a chat with them, and from then on I was hooked."
The conversation prompted a membership with the local historical machinery club, where Caleb was mentored by the older retired gentlemen who also gifted him a few engines and used their expertise to teach him how to fix them. Now a proud restorer and collector of historical machines, Caleb said the experience gave him a strong appreciation of the importance of spare parts.
"Through all my restorations, I have had some real insights into the important role parts play in making something work, and how rewarding it is when you find a part you've been searching for," he said.
"When the opportunity came up for an apprenticeship working with John Deere parts, I jumped at it, and haven't looked back.
"As I was growing up, I thought about pursuing a career as a mechanic, but now I wouldn't trade their job for mine any day.
"I love the interaction with customers and seeing that look of joy in their eyes when I tell them we have, or can get, the part they've been looking for. It is so rewarding."