Radio presenter dies after being rushed into hospital with Covid

Father-of-one, 54, becomes radio station’s second presenter to die from Covid after he is rushed to hospital

  • Simon Bolton worked at Zetland FM, based in Teesside, since it launched in 2015
  • He was taken to hospital with Covid on December 22 and died two days later 
  • Last year another Zetland presenter died after battling Covid in intensive care
  • Julie Donaldson was hospitalised in October 2020 and died later that month

A radio presenter died on Christmas Eve after he was rushed to hospital with coronavirus. 

Father-of-one Simon Bolton, 54, had worked at Zetland FM, based in Redcar, Teesside, since it launched in 2015, presenting programmes including its Monday sport show, Friday rock show and weekend breakfast segment.

He was taken to James Cook University Hospital in Middlesbrough on December 22 after testing positive for Covid before dying suddenly two days later, Teesside Live reports. 

His wife of 17 years Joanne, 43, said the family were not sure how he died. 

Paying tribute to her husband, who was father to 16-year-old Leyla, she said: ‘He was well-known by people. He had a good gob on him, he could talk for England! 

‘Being a radio presenter was what he wanted to do. Radio Revivals was his passion. It was the stuff that never got played and that’s what he preferred.’

It is not yet clear if Mr Bolton had been vaccinated.  

His death comes just one year after another Zetland FM presenter, Julie Donaldson, died after battling Covid-19 in intensive care.  

Father-of-one Simon Bolton, 54, had worked at Zetland FM, based in Redcar, Teesside, since it launched in 2015, presenting programmes including its Monday sport show, Friday rock show and weekend breakfast segment

Mrs Donaldson’s husband John had said his wife’s heart ‘simply could not cope with the strain which her deteriorating lungs were placing on it’ after she was admitted to hospital with the ‘terrible disease’ in October 2020. 

Zetland FM said in a statement later that month that Mrs Donaldson, who presented the ‘Morning Mix’, was ‘exceptional’ at her job and a ‘hugely valued colleague and a friend’.

Yesterday, at 12pm, staff at the radio station paid tribute to ‘immensely knowledgeable’ Mr Bolton.  

Yesterday, at 12pm, staff at the radio station paid tribute to ‘immensely knowledgeable’ Mr Bolton

The station wrote in a statement: ‘Simon was also a huge film fan, in particular the ”Star Wars” movies, as well as enjoying many other films as a regular customer at the Regent Cinema in Redcar.

‘In recent years Simon’s life had been dominated by health problems, and he worked hard to record his weekly programme for Zetland FM at his home in Redcar.

‘Simon will be hugely missed by all his colleagues, friends and listeners at Zetland FM and we send our heartfelt condolences to his wife Joanne, daughter Leyla, family and friends.’

Mr Bolton’s favourite band was The Beatles, and whenever was on air he would ‘always try to squeeze a track from them into his show’.

Born in Redcar, he had attended Sacred Heart School from 1979-1984 and in 2017 was involved in organising a reunion of former students. 

He was also a life-long fan of Middlesbrough Football Club, and was known for his long involvement with the Boro Supporters Club.

MailOnline has contacted Zetland FM for further comment.  

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