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Michael Mosley’s wife ‘devastated’ as she confirms death of TV doctor

Image: PA Wire

The widow of TV doctor and columnist Michael Mosley said it is “devastating” to have lost her “wonderful, funny, kind and brilliant husband” as she confirmed he has been found dead on the Greek island of Symi after going missing on Wednesday.

His body was discovered in a rocky area beside Agia Marina on Symi on Sunday after an extensive search led by emergency workers, around a 30-minute walk from the village of Pedi where Mosley was last seen on CCTV.

The 67-year-old TV personality was with his wife and friends at Agios Nikolaos beach on Wednesday, before going alone for a walk to the centre of the island.

In a statement from his agent to the PA news agency, Dr Clare Bailey Mosley said: “I don’t know quite where to begin with this. It’s devastating to have lost Michael, my wonderful, funny, kind and brilliant husband.

“We had an incredibly lucky life together. We loved each other very much and were so happy together. I am incredibly proud of our children, their resilience and support over the past days.

“My family and I have been hugely comforted by the outpouring of love from people from around the world. It’s clear that Michael meant a huge amount to so many of you.

“We’re taking comfort in the fact that he so very nearly made it. He did an incredible climb, took the wrong route and collapsed where he couldn’t be easily seen by the extensive search team. Michael was an adventurous man, it’s part of what made him so special.”

She said the family are also “so grateful to the extraordinary people on Symi” who worked “tirelessly” to help find Mosley, with some working from dawn until dusk unasked.

Dr Bailey Mosley added: “I feel so lucky to have our children and my amazing friends. Most of all, I feel so lucky to have had this life with Michael. Thank-you all.”

Mosley’s four children joined their mother, a GP and cookery book writer, on Symi earlier this week to help with the search effort.

His body was discovered around mid-morning on Sunday beneath a fence that runs around a bar on Agia Marina beach, which is surrounded by hilly, rocky terrain.

Police arrived at Agia Marina around 20 minutes after the body was discovered about 90 metres from the coastline.

Firefighters arrived at the marina just after 2pm local time and took the body away from the island on a stretcher on a boat.

On Saturday, an emergency services helicopter spent hours flying across the mountainous search site on Symi between Pedi bay and Agia Marina, and hovered over the spot where the body was later found.

Agia Marina bar manager Ilias Tsavaris, 38, first saw the body alongside journalists after the island’s mayor “saw something” by the fence of the bar and alerted staff.

He said: “They saw it with the boat. The mayor came and saw something so that is when they called me and said ‘Hey they saw something go and check there’.

“They called me, they said ‘You know what we saw something from far away, can you go and check’, so I went there.

“When I walked up I saw something like a body to make sure. You don’t see a dead body everyday, it is not a warzone, it’s summer, you are supposed to have fun and swimming.

“He came from Pedi OK, and he walked not through the restaurant. If he had walked through there (the bar) we would have checked the cameras.”

The search effort had been widespread, operating in dangerous conditions and high temperatures, and included police, firefighters with drones, Greek Red Cross workers, divers, a search dog and a helicopter.

Greek authorities shifted their focus on Saturday after CCTV footage from a house at the edge of a small marina in Pedi showed the presenter walking towards a mountainous path at about 2pm local time on Wednesday.

New footage released on Saturday also appeared to show Mosley walking unimpeded with an umbrella near to the marina.

Mosley first trained as a doctor in London before moving into the world of media, becoming a presenter, documentary maker, author and columnist.

During his career he presented a host of science programmes and films including the BBC series Trust Me, I’m A Doctor, which looked at healthcare in Britain, and hosted BBC Radio 4 podcast Just One Thing, where he revealed tips to help improve your health.

The BBC’s chief content officer Charlotte Moore described him as a “brilliant science broadcaster and programme maker” who was able to make “the most complex subjects simple” as she paid tribute.

“He was also passionate about engaging and entertaining audiences, inspiring us all to live a healthier, fuller life,” she said.

“His entertaining and accessible style was enjoyed by audiences around the world and he will be hugely missed by many people not least those fortunate enough to have worked with him at the BBC.”

Ted Verity, editor of Mail Newspapers where Mosley was a regular columnist, said the TV doctor was as “electrifying” in person as he was in print and on TV.

He added: “What shone through was his irrepressible curiosity – he was always hungry to learn about the very latest, cutting-edge science and medicine and then explain it to readers in a way that was both engaging and comprehensible to a mainstream audience.

“Michael was also extremely kind, not hesitating to be one of the first to offer his home as sanctuary to a Ukrainian family.

“And he always spoke with enormous love and warmth of his wife Clare, his co-author on many projects, and four children Alexander, Jack, Daniel and Katherine. Our hearts go out to them all.”

The managing editor of Mosley’s publisher, Octopus Publishing Group, remembered him as a “brilliant, warm, funny and kind man”.

Anna Bond added: “He dedicated his time to educating and empowering millions across the world to live longer, healthier lives and his powerful legacy is a gift that will live on as viewers, listeners and readers continue to enjoy a better quality of life via his books and his journalism, TV programmes, the Fast 800 community, and his BBC podcast Just One Thing.”

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