Legendary Nine broadcaster Brian Henderson has died aged 89

Brian Henderson

Current Nine Sydney newsreader Peter Overton paid tribute to Henderson this morning

Tributes to long-time Nine Sydney newsreader Brian Henderson are flooding social media this morning. Nine’s Today show co-host Karl Stefanovic announced his passing at 9am on the program this morning.

“Brian was 89 and a much-loved member of the Nine family,” said Stefanovic.

“He read the weeknight Sydney News from 1957 until his retirement in 2002 as Australia’s longest-serving news presenter. He also hosted Bandstand for many years. I knew him, he was an absolute legend.

“He was a gentleman and a total professional who provided guidance and inspiration for so many colleagues and generations who followed. Brian was married to his lovely wife Mardi for 48 years and she was at his bedside along with his daughters Jodie and Nicole.”

Henderson was born in New Zealand and became known to colleagues and many viewers as “Hendo”.

His trademark farewell at the end of each bulletin was “…and that’s the way it is” or “the way it is”.

When Henderson retired at the end of the TV ratings year in 2002, he noted it was time for him to stop presenting the news and to start watching it.

His final message to viewers was: “Not the way it was, as has been suggested, but for the last time, the way it is, this Friday the 29th of November, this is Brian Henderson – a sad Brian Henderson – saying not good night, this time, but goodbye.”

Henderson was later heard on Foxtel a decade later as the narrator of the documentary on the Granville rail disaster.

Former colleague Jim Wilson, now with 2GB, said this morning: “A giant of the industry, was a taskmaster (along with Ian Cook) with me when I started at Nine News Sydney and best thing that ever happened to me professionally.”

Current Nine Sydney newsreader Peter Overton paid tribute to Henderson this morning at the start of the Ray Hadley 2GB program.

Peter Costello, chairman of Nine, remembered Henderson as the “best of the best”.

He told The Sydney Morning Herald: “He was iconic. The ultimate professional and the trusted face of television news for generations of Australians.

“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 was “idolised by every one of us lucky enough to have worked with him”.

“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.”

Watch Hendo’s final Nine Sydney bulletin here.

To Top