Athens-based journalist Vassilis Lyritzis, known for his lively and critical coverage of the news on television and radio, died in the early hours of Tuesday at the age of 62.
His death, which has been attributed to an aggressive form of cancer, was announced by fellow presenter Dimitris Oikononou, Lyritzis's co-anchor on popular current affairs shows for Flash radio, ERT public television and Skai TV for more than 20 years.
“It is like losing a brother. It is a heavy blow,” Oikonomou said in his announcement, adding that Lyritzis's health had deteriorated rapidly over the past month and he died in hospital.
Lyritzis was born in Iraklio, Crete, in 1957 and grew up in Athens. He studied Italian literature at Thessaloniki University's School of Philosophy, a period during which he also became active in politics with the Greek Communist Party (KKE).
He embarked on his career as a journalist with the leftist newspaper Avgi and went on to work in 1990 with then new radio station Flash, where he first teamed up with Oikonomou.
The pair took their show to television in 2002, appearing on public broadcaster ERT and later on the private channel Skai TV, where they hosted the successful “Front Line” news show from 2010 to 2017.
Lyritzis went on to present a daily news show on Real FM radio, while also writing for Ethnos daily.
He is survived by his wife Eleni Antoniadi and their two children.