Tributes have flowed from across the television industry for former news presenter Ian Ross, who was known as one of the good guys of the business.
The long-time newsreader for the Nine Network and later Seven died overnight aged 73.
Ross, who was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer before Christmas following a routine blood test, died on the Gold Coast overnight surrounded by family and friends.
Nine chief executive David Gyngell said the Australian television industry had lost “one of our best and bravest in the sad passing of Ian Ross”.
“Roscoe is the good guy who always finished first. That he was universally loved by his peers in as tough and competitive an industry as television news says it all. What’s more, his wide audience also thought the world of him.
“Ian was a lovely man – warm, generous, hilarious, a great, loyal friend to all his colleagues and the ultimate professional. He will be sadly missed. I extend our deepest condolences to Ian’s family and his partner, Gray.”
Ross worked at Nine for 38 years, including a decade as the newsreader on morning program Today, before switching to the Seven Network.
He read the nightly news in Sydney for Seven before taking off his mike for the last time in 2009.
Seven chief executive Tim Worner said Ross left an impression wherever he went and his death would be felt throughout the industry.
“Ian Ross was a champion bloke,” Worner said in a statement.
“Newsrooms bring out the best of characters and Roscoe was one of the best of the best.
“Everyone who had the opportunity to work alongside Roscoe during his 50-year journalistic career will remember him with tremendous affection.”
Ross began his media career in 1957 at Sydney radio station 2GB before switching to 2MW Murwillumbah on the far north coast of NSW, where his tasks included writing advertising scripts to hosting his own program.
He ended up back in Sydney in 1961 in 2SM’s newsroom, and he got his big break in TV in 1965 as a reporter with Nine.
After seven years at Nine, Ross headed to London in 1972 for a couple of years with the now-defunct television wire service UPITN before returning to Nine in 1974.
In 2003, Ross left Nine to head Seven’s 6pm news bulletin in Sydney until 2009.
Ross is survived by his partner of 22 years, Gray Bolte, his ex-wife, three children and eight grandchildren.