Renowned sports journalist Rebecca Wilson dies aged 54

Tributes are pouring in for Sydney sports journalist Rebecca Wilson who died this morning at age 54 after a private battle with breast cancer.

Wilson is being remembered as a strong and courageous trailblazer who was passionate about sport and journalism.

Husband, former News Limited chief executive John Hartigan, and sons Tom and Will said in a statement she passed away at her Sydney home.

“Courage has always been a significant part of her DNA, no less in her desperate battle against her insidious disease,” the family said.

“She brushed aside evil trolls, bullies and organised crime figures to prosecute her craft.”

“She proved that women had an equally important role in sports journalism as her male counterparts.”

Sydney broadcaster and friend Alan Jones struggled to get the words out about his former colleague on air this morning.

“Bec was a force of nature, in a way,” he said.

“She was brilliant, she was unsparing.”

Rebecca kept her illness a closely guarded secret, with the majority of her friends, colleagues and even members of her family unaware of the extent of her illness.

“She did so to limit their suffering,” the family said.

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Picture of Rebecca Wilson from Offsiders: “Newspaper war” & Rebecca Wilson’s conflict of interest YouTube