Friends ‘heartbroken’ by death of former Radio 1 DJ Mike Smith

Friends and former colleagues of BBC Radio 1 presenter Mike Smith have described their “heartbreak” after the 59-year-old died in hospital.

Mike Smith and Sarah Greene

Breakfast Show alumni including Noel Edmonds, Mike Read and Simon Mayo joined others from the world of entertainment in mourning Smith’s death.

Smith, who was married to fellow TV personality Sarah Greene, died in hospital on Friday from complications connected to his recent major heart surgery. The couple, who married in 1989 and were childless, lived in London.

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Edmonds, a long-term friend of the couple, said in a statement: “I am totally stunned and heartbroken for Sarah and his family.

“Mike introduced me to motor racing and I introduced him to radio. He was so much more than simply a presenter. Mike was that rare individual – the consummate broadcaster in an era when professionalism, dedication and hard work were truly valued.

“I am typing this through the tears. I wish I had told him more forcefully and frequently how much I admired his talent and valued his support.”

Mayo, who took on the Breakfast Show when Smith left in 1988, wrote on Twitter: “Shocked to hear of Mike Smith’s death today. Condolences to Sarah and all his family.

“When we joined Radio 1 in 86, he was the guy who had it all. His breakfast show was a shiny, sparkly thing, a must-listen.”

A BBC spokesman said: “We are saddened to hear of Mike’s passing. He was a talented presenter and a brilliant Radio 1 Breakfast Show host, and our thoughts are with his family.”

Smith spent much of his time in recent years working as managing director and aerial cameraman for his Flying TV company.