He went on to achieve national fame as the presenter of radio breakfast show Good Morning Scotland from its launch in 1973 until moving onto TV as host of Reporting Scotland during the 1980s and 90s.
For much of the 2000s, he was a presenter on television’s Newsnight Scotland before retiring from the corporation in 2007.
Former colleague and current Reporting Scotland presenter Jackie Bird said: “He was Reporting Scotland….a true Scottish broadcasting great.”
“I was in awe at working with someone with such a reputation, but he turned out to be warm and welcoming with a fantastically dry sense of humour.”
John is credited with having helped shape the character of Scottish current affairs journalism, resisting what he termed the “skateboarding ducks” approach of some English regional news programmes.
“That sort of showbiz approach is not natural to me, nor to a great many Scots,” he once said. “And I don’t think I’d be very good at a song-and-dance routine.”