I remember the morning news chief Herk saying, to no one in particular: “She’s a good sort that Hils. She comes in, does the job and not a trace of ego on her!” I’d only been at RadioLIVE a few months, but I couldn’t agree more with his vociferous colleague testimonial.
Hilary Barry isn’t one for just receiving feedback, either, she gives as good as she gets. When I left to attempt this bike ride thing, she was right there with support for my mad idea and even gave Herk some choice remarks in the obligatory comedy leaving audio recordings. (I won’t make this public, as it was never intended to be, but trust me, it’s great.)
Lying battered, bruised and misshapen in a Wellington Hospital bed at 4am, following that Queen Charlotte Track crash, I tweeted about the sandwich an orderly had just brought me. Hils tweeted me straight back to offer her support and best wishes for my recovery.
Off-the-mic or behind the cam, Hils was always grinning or winking. Following my Paul Henry interview, she was straight in with a hug, despite the long-haired, filthy-bearded ‘feral’ I had become on this adventure. That’s because Hilary Barry is real.
I know she’s only leaving her job, but its a job that involves engaging with a lot of people daily. And when you feature in so many lives, your presence counts for something. Her presence in my life counts for something and her support over those eight months last year is fully appreciated. Go well Hils x