Entertainment News

  • 3 August 2014, 22:21

'Heartbreak' Over Death Of DJ Mike Smith

Noel Edmonds, Mike Read and Simon Mayo have joined others from the world of entertainment in mourning the death of former BBC Radio 1 DJ Mike Smith.

The broadcaster and qualified helicopter pilot died in hospital at the age of 59. He had complications connected to recent major heart surgery.

He was married to fellow television personality Sarah Greene for 25 years.

In a statement released through Smith's aerial filming company Flying TV, Ms Greene said she would "like to offer enormous thanks to the staff at the hospital for their care and compassion".

The statement said Ms Greene has asked that she, her family and friends be allowed to mourn in peace.

A Flying TV spokesman said: "Mike founded Flying TV 10 years ago and the company says his legacy will be FTV continuing to go from strength to strength."

Smith's career began at hospital radio before joining BBC Radio 1 in 1975.

In 1983, Smith took over the weekday lunchtime show and took on the Breakfast Show in 1986, succeeding Mike Read.

Paying tribute, Read said: "The news is just devastating. Sarah and Mike were a wonderful couple - it is truly horrible to hear."

"He became a mainstay of Radio 1, was highly successful on television too, and started up his own business which he was very good at.

"Mike was a very affable guy, fantastically business-like. It's a real loss and has come as quite a shock."

TV presenter Noel Edmonds, a long-term friend of the couple, said: "I am totally stunned and heartbroken for Sarah and his family."

Phillip Schofield, who presented the show Going Live! with Greene, tweeted: "There are no words. My wonderful, bright, funny, thoughtful friend Mike Smith has passed away @RealSarahGreene I'm so so sorry my darling."

Smith was a key figure in the early years of Comic Relief but largely stayed away from the limelight after a helicopter crash in 1988 in which both he and his then-girlfriend Ms Greene were injured.

The helicopter he was piloting crashed in Gloucestershire. Ms Greene broke both legs and an arm, and Smith suffered a broken back and ankle.

He proposed to her just weeks later and they were married the following year.

They were childless and lived in London.