Legendary broadcaster Brian Henderson dies aged 89

Legendary broadcaster Brian Henderson has died aged 89 following a battle with cancer.

Henderson hosted the Sydney weeknight news for Nine from 1957 until his retirement in 2002, becoming Australia's longest-serving news presenter.

He also hosted Bandstand from 1958 until 1972.

TRIBUTES: 'A giant of Australian television'

Nine's Peter Overton said he had received a text from Henderson's long-time wife Mardi to say he had died at about 4.50am.

"She said that he was at peace when he passed away and he was surrounded, he had Mardi and beautiful daughters Jodie and Nicole," Overton said.

"I've spoken to them this morning and they are naturally as a family just gathered and sitting and reflecting on this man who had, may I say, a wicked sense of humour and was so engaged in the news right up to his passing."

Today host Karl Stefanovic said Henderson was "an absolute legend".

"A gentleman and a total professional who provided guidance and inspiration for so many colleagues and generations who followed," he said.

"We loved him."

Peter Costello, Chairman of Nine, paid tribute to Henderson's warmth, professionalism and legacy.

"Brian Henderson was the best of the best, he was iconic. The ultimate professional and the trusted face of television news for generations of Australians," said Mr Costello.

Brian Henderson obituary

"Hendo was not just a much loved newsman, he also brought modern pop music to generations of Australian teenagers through his hosting role on Bandstand.

"He was trusted, he had a warmth that he brought into the living rooms of millions of Australians. He will be deeply missed but his giant legacy and contribution will live on in the DNA of Nine."

Darren Wick, Nine's Director of News and Current Affairs, said Henderson set the standard for the news team.

"Hendo was much loved and idolised by everyone of us lucky enough to have worked with him and learn from him," said Mr Wick.

Brian Henderson obituary

"He was the biggest star in a 9News team that boasted the biggest names in journalism – Laurie Oakes, Liz Hayes, Georgie Gardner, Ken Sutcliffe, Peter Harvey, Robert Penfold, Peter Overton, Leila McKinnon, Allison Langdon and Karl Stefanovic.

"He was the epitome of credibility, reliability and clarity. He set the standard that we aspire to live up to every night of the week."

Henderson had two daughters, Jody and Nicole, with long-time wife Mardi.

Henderson also had two children from his first marriage.

He won two Gold Logies in his life, the first in 1968 as the host of Bandstand.

In 2013 he received a second, when he became the 30th member of the TV Week Logies Hall of Fame.

He was also made a Member of the Order of Australia in 2009 for his contributions to TV news, entertainment, and journalism.

Henderson survived multiple battles with cancer, before opting not to receive treatment for kidney cancer last year.

Overton interviewed Henderson not long after that diagnosis, and said he had not been scared of death.

"I asked him how he felt about death and he said that when he is on the other side and one day when I come over, we could catch up for a drink," Overton wrote.

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