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‘Determined and passionate’ journalist dies at 79

Tributes have been paid to a “first class” daily news reporter who has died at the age of 79 after suffering a stroke.

Gordon Argo worked as a journalist for the Aberdeen Evening Express for many years and became deputy news editor during his time with the newspaper.

He covered some of the North-East’s biggest stories including the notorious murder of Mearns farmer Maxwell Garvie in 1968.

His brother-in-law Dennis Sherriffs, also a retired reporter, said Gordon will be sadly missed.

Gordon Argo has died at the age of 79

“Gordon was very determined in his work as a journalist and was a very good reporter.He was very passionate about this work,” he told the Evening Express.

Dennis added that his brother-in-law was a “gentleman” and no one ever had a bad word to say about him.

“It was his ability to listen to others. Everyone loved Gordon. He was a loving family man and loved to potter around the garden,” he added.

As well as working for the Evening Express, Gordon had stints as a reporter for the Daily Mail and the Daily Record.

Former Evening Express news editor Jimmy Lees said Gordon was a “first class journalist”.

“He was an all-rounder and did a lot of important stories and covered a lot of important events. He was a very nice person and very popular among his fellow journalists,” he said.

Evening Express columnist Moreen Simpson worked with Gordon for more than 20 years.

“Gordon was definitely one of the best reporters I have ever worked with. He was absolutely passionate about his job and getting stories to the readers fairly and accurately,” she said.

“He loved the job and you could really see that. He would come into the office every morning and rub his hands together and say, ‘right what have we got today then’.

“Gordon was a fantastic person, he was full of fun and loved life.

“He was also brilliant with young reporters and was always keen to pass on his experience and knowledge.

“Journalism has lost one of its real masters.”

He is survived by his wife Norma, 77, sons Gary and Philip, and daughter Suzanne.

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  • February 3, 2014 at 7:46 am

    I have always had a great affection for ‘Gordie’, whom I first met in 1964.

    I was a young reporter with the once great Beaverbrook Scottish Daily Express and he was a senior reporter with the once great Daily Record – each vying against each other for the best stories and circulations.

    When I say young I was six year younger that Gordon, now 73.

    He was a laugh a minute.

    It was the summer of 1964 when I was sent from Glasgow, because of my Highland knowledge, to cover a royal visit over about a week from Wick to Hopeman, near Elgin, where Prince Charles was a student.

    Because of a dispute among the union that made the plates for photographs, extra editorial staff was sent north to write flowery stories about the trip.

    The Record sent one Rena George to work with Gordon.

    It was a wonderful summer. The sun never went down that mid-summer day in Wick. After midnight some of us went golfing and others went swimming in the outdoor pool.

    Gordon went swimming.

    Next day at breakfast in Mackays Hotel Gordon could not find his false teeth.

    He reckoned they had fallen out during his swim, but a search by the local council could find no trace of his ivories.

    Gordon had reported home that he had lost his teeth while swimming.

    However, when he did get back to his then home, in Inverness, she found said lost teeth in pocket of trousers that we were being sent to the cleaners.

    However, there is another ending. The other Daily Record reporter, Rena, and I met again during coverage of a Glasgow September weekend on Arran.

    We got engaged that Christmas and married on September, 17, 1965.

    So those days with Gordon Argo do bring happy memories.

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