Vale John Tingle – RadioInfo Australia

Broadcaster, journalist and politician John Tingle died last Friday at the age of 90.

Daughter, ABC reporter Laura Tingleannounced his death on Saturday morning with the following obituary:

John Saxon Tingle (November 2, 1931 – August 5, 2022)

John Tingle had never planned a life in journalism or in public as a young man.

But for nearly 70 years, Tingle, who died months before his 91st birthday, was a familiar voice to hundreds of thousands of Australians, as an ABC journalist, commercial broadcaster, politician and community advocate.

He was born in Bondi at the height of the Great Depression and crossed the brand new Sydney Harbor Bridge on its official opening day in March 1932 as a baby.

His parents – Leigh Lewis Tingle and Maureen Patricia O’Rourke – were a colorful couple: Leigh a frustrated, dreamy comedian who had been forced to go to the pharmacy by his father; Molly is also a dreamer on a plane all by herself.

With his younger sister Margaret, he grew up in a flat in the Bondi Beach hinterland, spending most of his days on the beach and his nights listening to music on the radio.
At the age of 9 he heard the Swedish tenor Jussi Björling sing Puccini and it was the beginning of a love affair with the singer and the composer.

He inherited his father’s love for sound equipment and, despite many opportunities, always preferred to hear recorded music over live performances, arguing that the recorded version would always be the best and most perfect. performs.

It was this fascination with sound equipment and music that first drove him to radio, where his ambitions were to act as a panel operator. But he found that when he was hired at a series of small-town radio stations, he was often the only staff available and also found himself writing and reading the news.

This led to a cadetship with the ABC newsroom in William Street, Sydney, where he met and, in 1955, married his wife, Pam.
He had a long career at the ABC, working in both radio and television, including as TV news director in Sydney at Gore Hill.

He often left for what seemed to his children exotic assignments abroad, including England, Africa, India and Papua New Guinea.

And he always seemed to be at the center of things – whether it was attending the Beatles press conference at Sydney Airport or, with then-budding cameraman Don McAlpine, swimming with then-Prime Minister Harold Holt at Cheviot Beach – where Holt was to drown. just a month later – to record his passion for snorkeling and scuba diving.

Tingle moved into commercial radio at 2UE in 1969, and a long career as a talkback host – when that form of radio was at its height – followed in the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s, mainly in Sydney but also in Melbourne and Brisbane. He has also presented television programs for the Nine and Seven networks, as well as SBS and WIN in Wollongong.

John and Pam raised three children: Peter, Sally and Laura. But the marriage ended in divorce in 1976. Tingle then married Gail Williams in 1980 and the couple were together until their divorce in 2012.

A lifelong interest in firearms and shooting made the subject of Australian gun laws a particular passion which led him to found the Shooters Party in 1992.

Partly as a result of a dare, he ran for the upper house of the New South Wales Parliament in 1995 and – to his surprise – was successful.

He then served in Parliament for eleven years, developing warm and sometimes unlikely relationships with fellow MPs from all political backgrounds. Labor’s Tony Burke, Independent MP Tony Windsor and Greens politician Ian Cohen were among those well remembered for his contribution to intelligent debates on legislation.

He retired to Port Macquarie and later to Wauchope, taking an active interest in the life of both communities and acting as their advocate. He is survived by his sister Margaret, his three children and his two grandchildren, Tosca and Kristian.

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