TVNZ news presenter and journalist Greg Boyed had been battling "depression", his grieving family say as they pay tribute to an "adored" son, brother, husband and father.

Boyed died on Monday while on a family holiday in Switzerland with his wife and young son.

The family said in a statement that Boyed, 48, had been "battling depression".

"Greg was the kindest and most caring man, a devoted father who cherished and loved his two children.

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"We are all struggling to comes to terms with this," the family said.

"He was absolutely loved and adored. A treasured son, brother, husband and father, he will be deeply missed.

Greg Boyed was an avid musician and an accomplished marathon runner. Photo / Supplied
Greg Boyed was an avid musician and an accomplished marathon runner. Photo / Supplied

"Greg was a talented journalist, presenter, musician and an exceptional friend to those lucky enough to know him."

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Tributes flow following the death of TVNZ news presenter Greg Boyed

As well as his young son, Boyed has a daughter, now in her early 20s, from an earlier relationship.

Boyed has been remembered today as a respected news reader at TVNZ and also a talented musician and dedicated marathon runner.

Close friend and former journalist Rachel Grunwell was shocked and devastated by Boyed's death.

"He was an amazing friend. I just wish I could have helped."

She and Boyed ran together "out west" but she said there was often more talking than running.

The pair were both ambassadors at Achilles New Zealand and Grunwell said Boyed took huge pleasure in helping other people.

When Boyed helped Grunwell guide a blind runner in the Rotorua Marathon a few years ago, he told her it boosted his confidence.

"He looked bullet-proof but he wasn't. He opened up to few people but when he did he had a massive heart. He was just a really kind man and he loved his kids and his family."

Grunwell said she had many special memories with Boyed - she plays the saxophone and Boyed was learning the instrument.

"He was just a really good friend. He gave back so much, to the charity, it actually made him really happy. I've been crying all morning. It's bloody devastating."

Grunwell and another friend had breakfast with Boyed before he flew to Europe a week ago.

The pair hugged goodbye.

"It's just a lot of shock."

TV industry tributes

TVNZ head of news and current affairs John Gillespie said the news had come as a huge shock to staff at the state broadcaster.

"Greg was a prominent figure in our newsroom for the last 25 years. He was a wonderful man and a talented broadcaster who strongly believed in the power and importance of journalism in people's lives.

"Greg was known for his wit and warmth and kindness. It's a very personal loss for us.

"It's a lot to take in. Greg will be greatly missed by us, he will be missed by our colleagues in the wider industry and he'll be missed by our viewers.

"Our thoughts are with Greg's whanau and friends."

Prime News presenter Eric Young described his close friend as the "kindest, sweetest, silliest man I knew".

Newshub news reader Mike McRoberts, who had previously worked at TVNZ, described Boyed as a "really warm and generous person".

The pair worked together at the state broadcaster during the late 1990s/early-2000s and McRoberts said Boyed was "incredibly generous".

"He was also involved in Achilles NZ which is the charity I'm involved with which helps disabled athletes compete in big events."

Boyed had been to New York as a guide and was an ambassador for the programme.

"That was typical of Greg. He was an incredibly generous person with his time."

McRoberts said he would always remember Boyed's humour.

"He was pretty dry, but very funny. He just had the ability to make people laugh. I know of other colleagues of his who have always talked about how relaxed they felt about working with him on the late show."

McRoberts said Boyed was a skilled journalist who performed at the top of his industry for at least two decades.

"I think to be in the industry as long as he had and to be still performing at that top level you've got to have a real passion for the job.

"He worked on Q + A as well and so clearly had some very good skills there in terms of interviewing and the work that he did.

"I know when we worked together he was very well respected."

Boyed's death was a huge shock and a "real upset", McRoberts said.

1 News political editor Jessica Mutch said she wanted to thank Boyed for all of the "advice, laughs and debates".

Boyed was due to start work as as contributor for the National Business Review when he returned from Europe. NBR publisher Todd Scott saying he was devastated by the news.

Broadcasting background

Boyed's broadcasting resume is packed with some of television's most recognisable shows – including One News, Fair Go, Q + A, Close Up and Target.

He was one of the three original hosts of Seven Sharp, alongside Jesse Mulligan and Ali Mau, when that show started in early 2013.

He was also the first to leave, later that year, returning to late-night television to host One News' Tonight bulletin.

Greg Boyed was one of the three original hosts of Seven Sharp, alongside Jesse Mulligan and Ali Mau, when the show started in early 2013.
Greg Boyed was one of the three original hosts of Seven Sharp, alongside Jesse Mulligan and Ali Mau, when the show started in early 2013.

"It's Greg's decision," a TVNZ spokeswoman said at the time.

"He's enjoyed his time on the show but he feels more at home behind the desk of Tonight. He feels his strengths are strongest, and best used, on a straight-up news offering."

Boyed grew up in Te Puke and started his journalism and broadcasting career in radio in Tauranga in 1991, quickly rising through the ranks and eventually moving to IRN in Wellington and then Auckland.

He continued to be a regular voice across the airwaves, most recently filling in as Drive host on Newstalk ZB, while Larry Williams was on holiday.

Greg Boyed presented some of TV's most recognisable shows - including One News, Fair Go, Q + A and Close Up. Photo / File
Greg Boyed presented some of TV's most recognisable shows - including One News, Fair Go, Q + A and Close Up. Photo / File

Boyed also worked as a TV producer, with a long list of credits including Flipside and The Last Word.

Boyed married Swiss singer-songwriter Caroline Chevin in 2014 in her native country, in a surprise wedding. Their son was born the following year.

Boyed was himself an avid musician who played the drums. He was also an accomplished marathon runner.

When Chevin arrived in New Zealand in 2014 she told Spy: "I'm excited to start my new life Downunder. I want to discover more of this beautiful country, learn about Kiwi culture and hopefully get inspired to make more music."

Tributes flow for respected broadcaster

New Zealand First list MP Jenny Marcroft, a former radio newsreader, said she was devastated to hear of the death of her friend.

Former TVNZ Breakfast host Rawdon Christie said the news was "horrific".

Broadcasting Minister Clare Curran extended her condolences to Boyed's family and friends.

Former National MP Tau Henare also paid his respects.

Former United Future leader and MP Peter Dunne said Boyed was a "skilled professional and a decent individual whom so many will miss".

Where to get help:

Lifeline: 0800 543 354 (available 24/7)
Suicide Crisis Helpline: 0508 828 865 (0508 TAUTOKO) (available 24/7)
Youthline: 0800 376 633
Kidsline: 0800 543 754 (available 24/7)
Whatsup: 0800 942 8787 (1pm to 11pm)
Depression helpline: 0800 111 757 (available 24/7)
If it is an emergency and you feel like you or someone else is at risk, call 111.