Tragedy as 'larger than life' radio host suddenly dies in his sleep - as football identities and politicians lead the tributes to the 57-year-old
Russell Woolf, beloved host of ABC Perth's Breakfast radio program, has died suddenly at 57.
His death was announced on air by colleague Geoff Hutchison on Tuesday, with West Australian Premier Mark McGowan among those to pay tribute.
'We've got some really sad news to share with you this morning that our beloved friend and colleague Russell Woolf died earlier this morning,' Hutchinson said.
'It's come as a huge shock to us. Today is a sad day.'
Woolf had been with the national broadcaster since 1997. He is understood to have died in his sleep.
'I was deeply saddened to hear of the passing of local media legend, Russell Woolf,' Mr McGowan tweeted.
'His unique and iconic voice, wit and and personality made him beloved by countless Western Australians. For many of us, whether we knew him personally or not, it will feel like we've lost a friend today.
'My thoughts are with his family, friends and colleagues during this difficult time.'
Former ABC broadcaster Glenn Mitchell said on Perth radio that 'Rusty' 'always had a smile on his face.'
'He was always this ebullient, bright, bubbly .. he was larger than life, with the great big mop of hair. He looked like an unmade bed but people just loved him,' Mitchell said.
Mitchell also tweeted: 'His support for me and my wife through tough times will never be forgotten ... thoughts with wife Kylie, daughter Bronte and ABC colleagues.'
Woolf's co-host on ABC Perth, Nadia Mitsopoulos, posted: 'My heart is broken. I love you Russ. I'll miss your hugs. Privileged to have shared a studio with you.'
Former West Coast Eagles AFL player Will Schofield posted a video on Twitter of Woolf dancing to Britney Spears in the ABC Radio studios after Schofield had accused him of playing 'old man' music on the station.
Another of Schofield's Tweets simply said, 'Love ya and miss ya mate.'
Hutchison recalled Woolf bringing him a stubby of Coopers Pale Ale after his first stint as morning show host in June 2006.
'He brought it straight into the studio to me and he said, 'have that, you deserve it'.'
'Just the most beautiful, beautiful friend.'
Woolf had been ABC TV's weather presenter for four years from 2007 to 2011.
He had also been an unsuccessful political candidate for a West Australian Senate seat in 2014.
Woolf was also widely remembered on Tuesday for his love of lawn bowls and his regular role as an MC of countless charity and community events.