Former ABC TV weatherman Mike Bailey has died aged 71.
The ABC personality and former director and chairman of the Wests Tigers died on Sunday, surrounded by family and friends.
Wests Tigers issued a statement that paid tribute to the club’s former chairman.
“Wests Tigers are deeply saddened by the passing of former director and chairman Mike Bailey OAM, who passed away peacefully surrounded by his family on Sunday, 20th June.”
Bailey had been a long-time supporter of the Western Suburbs Magpies and the Wests Tigers. He was also elected chairman of Wests Ashfield in 2011, also serving as director and chairman of Wests Tigers during this time.
Bailey had a long career in the media, working for numerous television organisations and radio stations, including Channel Seven and the ABC.
He joined the ABC as a cadet journalist in 1968. He left to work at Channel Seven for 13 years until he returned to the national broadcaster.
After retiring from the ABC in 2007, he again presented the weather during a brief stint on Channel Nine until he left in 2009.
He was awarded the Order of Australia Medal in 2020 for his extensive service to the community, a recognition for the genuine consideration he had for those around him.
Wests Tigers Chair Lee Hagipantelis and CEO Justin Pascoe paid tribute to Bailey’s service to the club and community.
“On behalf of all at Wests Tigers, we are extremely saddened by the loss of Mike and thankful for all that he has done for our club,” Mr Hagipantelis said.
“I consider him a true friend and mentor and my deepest sympathies and thoughts are with Mike’s family – his wife Helena and son Michael – during this time.”
Mr Pascoe said: “Mike’s commitment to Wests Tigers was of the highest level and his contribution to this club will not be forgotten.”
“He was a true gentleman and always willing to assist Wests Tigers wherever he could, giving the time for others before himself.”
Wests Ashfield CEO Simon Cook said Bailey would be deeply missed.
“The news of Mike’s passing is devastating,” Mr Cook said.
“Mike was a mentor, a friend and a beautiful human being. The staff and I will miss his smiling face, his wisdom, loyalty, and his unwavering support.”
Former TV colleagues also led the tributes, with ABC News presenter Juanita Phillips remembering her former colleague on Twitter.
“So terribly sad to hear of the death of the ABC’s legendary weatherman Mike Bailey. He was a true gentleman – good values, proud of his craft and a delight to work with,” she wrote.
ABC TV host Joe O’Brien joined the Twitter tributes, writing “Mike Bailey was a down to earth, warm, funny guy. You can still tell by that cheeky glint in his eye. Sad to hear he has passed away”.
ABC Breakfast host Michael Rowland wrote: “Some really sad news. Former ABC weather presenter Mike Bailey has died in hospital after falling ill recently. He was superb at his craft and was a genuinely nice man. My sympathies to his family and friends.”