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In Loving Memory of a Good Father, Broadcaster & Friend – Yinka Craig

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23rd of September 2008. 9 am. I was in theatre assisting the caesarean section delivery of a patient at the National Hospital in Abuja when I heard the news. I always thought it paradoxical that I was helping to bring forth a life just at about the same time the life of the one who brought me forth was slipping away. The consultant informed me that I had a visitor and instructed me to scrub out. As I walked out of theatre into the hallway, still wearing my surgical mask I saw my Aunt. She didn’t have to say a word; I saw it in her eyes. My father had passed on.

Yinka Craig was a talker.

As far back as I can remember, people always seemed to want to hear him speak. And so whether it was his jocular football or boxing commentary, his humorous insights on ”Newsline’ and AM Express’ or his hard-line style of interview on Presidential media chats, Yinka Craig was the quintessential broadcaster.

I remember my siblings and I would huddle in front of our old Panasonic television on Sunday nights (the only time we were allowed to overstay our bed time) and watch him and Patrick Oke anchor Newsline. At that time, Newsline was a cultural adventure into the wonderfully diverse country that is Nigeria. He and his team would travel the length and breadth of the states to unearth fascinating stories of bravery and friendship and courage that inspired millions of families scattered across the nation. It didn’t matter who you were or where you were from; at 9 o’clock on Sundays you sat by your telly, or your neighbours’ telly and watched Yinka on Newsline!

I remember his coverage of the Argungu fishing festival in the late 80’s and how my adolescent eyes watched in fascination as literally hundreds of thousands of barely clothed men rushed into the muddy waters of the river to catch enormous fish with their bare hands. He was right there in the water too, trousers rolled up, microphone in hand, gesticulating in the direction of the action and running a commentary that painted vivid pictures of what transpired beneath those murky waters, giving a front seat view of one of Nigeria’s most spectacular events.

Such were the power of my father’s words.
Those who knew him spoke of him glowingly and one of the terms frequently used to describe him was ‘encyclopedic’. He read wide and had an insatiable hunger to know more, do more, and be more! He had his hands in many pies as well and somehow excelled at all. To name a few, he was an avid Aviator and had his own personal flight simulator, he was fascinated by Astronomy and knew as much about galaxies and constellations as an average college professor and he was also a prolific Musician and played the Piano, Guitar, Violin, Clarinet and Saxophone. It still puzzles me how one person could know so much detail about so many things. Nothing seemed beyond his grasp.

Despite his very public persona however, Yinka was actually a very private person. As much as he loved to work an audience, he also enjoyed the closeness of small gatherings with friends and family and was known to entertain his guests with rambunctious jokes and impromptu guitar renditions. He was a loving father and a devoted husband and others have described him as a true friend, a supportive boss, a generous benefactor, and a detribalized Nigerian.

Yinka Craig was indeed a remarkable man.

Today, five years later, I remember a colossus who in my mind stands shoulder to shoulder with other screen legends as David Frost, David Attenborough and Larry King; I remember a man whose charisma, kindness, generosity, simplicity and intelligence were of great renown; I remember a broadcaster whose novel ideas created some of the best television our country has ever seen. Today I remember my father.

On behalf of my family, I would like to ask that you please join us as we remember Yinka Craig and look back at his life and his over thirty five years of broadcast excellence. How do you remember him? What were your favourite shows?
Do you remember any iconic moments from NTA Sports, Newsline, Morning Ride, Daybreak, AM Express, or the Presidential media chats? Do you have any pictures or videos to share? Please leave your comments and thoughts on the Yinka Craig facebook page or tweet at us with the hash tag #YinkaCraig.

Thank you very much for your support and God bless you.

David Olamide Craig is a Pastor, Physician, Sex Therapist and Relationship Expert. Dr. Craig is double certified in Occupational Medicine and Family Medicine. He graduated Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery from the University of Ibadan, holds a Masters in Occupational Health from the University of Birmingham and is a Member of the Royal College of General Practice UK. When he is not seeing patients or helping people find true love, Dr. Craig spends his time stretched out on his favourite couch, reading books, magazines, and blogs. Follow him @RevDrCraig or visit www.OlamideCraig.com

79 Comments

  1. smashingM

    September 23, 2013 at 10:02 am

    I remember him…AM express. God rest his soul and console his family

  2. Lydia

    September 23, 2013 at 10:02 am

    His memory is still fresh. I remember always looking forward to watching news line then. Unfortunately many of my generation may not read this blog but this is a beautiful description of a father and astute broadcaster.

  3. Dora the explorer

    September 23, 2013 at 10:04 am

    Sir Yinka Craig of blessed memories, you will not be forgotten for your contribution to Nigeria’s media and tivi growth..

  4. Scope

    September 23, 2013 at 10:23 am

    I remember him a lot because after ‘tales by moonlight’ my mum insisted that I stay awake to watch ‘newsline’ not for the stories but to learn how the way Yinka pronounced words. After a while I started liking the stories rather than learn. He was very iconic and quite handsome. A talker he was but very interesting. God bless you as you rest in peace

  5. Sexxie

    September 23, 2013 at 10:31 am

    May God continue to bless his gentle soul, amen.

  6. dp

    September 23, 2013 at 10:39 am

    I really loved him them oh, cos i saw him as a very very handsome man

    • zoomzoomzoom

      September 23, 2013 at 9:02 pm

      Me too,I saw him as very handsome, I longed to see his smile on NEWSLINE& later AM EXPRESS. He was a great communicator, very captivating too!
      May his soul rest in peace.

  7. Sim

    September 23, 2013 at 10:39 am

    Oh God! I have tears in my eyes.
    AM Express! AM Express and Yinka Craig have always been synonymous to me.
    My home was actually a radio place in the mornings, but after AM express started, everybody in my house became “believers”. After Yinka Craig left, it just wasn’t it anymore, AM express lost it’s savour.
    Himself and the hausa-fulani man (forgot his name) had great on-screen rapport, I always felt they were actually friends off-screen.
    His enunciation, gosh, absolutely perfect, and he always made you feel like he was right there with you at home. 🙂
    When we heard about his illness, everybody in my house prayed for his recovery. When he died… if we took it that hard, I can only imagine how it must have been for you guys.
    Dr Craig, Your father was a great man, truly and indeed.

    • uberchic

      September 23, 2013 at 9:08 pm

      the hausa man is Sadiq Daba

  8. Ady

    September 23, 2013 at 10:43 am

    Really he was a quintessential broadcaster, I remember his Am express days, continue to rest in bosom of the Almighty.

  9. Iyke

    September 23, 2013 at 10:45 am

    Olamide, your dad lived to live a life that fulfills the promise of his creation…the pledge of matter gathered and well spent. Time realized in homage to the best with in him…as within us all. He chose to be free…boundless and infinite in his quest… His pursuit to live and love brilliantly, completely…and indeed walked into the next life…without regret! May he continue to rest in the Lord.

  10. Hassan Adulmumin

    September 23, 2013 at 10:46 am

    Yinka Craig was a delight to watch,to listen to,to draw inspiration from. One memory i hold close was his analysis on a certain plan crash that occurs before his death. he knows alot about everything. In all he does he does it with perfection. In sport,Yinka was awesome,many times i had look forward to seeing him anchor football matches. There come AM Express. He made me glued to my Tv set every morning. For me his memory will live on. sun re o. Baba Yinka Craig.

  11. tutsie

    September 23, 2013 at 10:47 am

    For a life well spent! He was an inspiration to many; thank God for his life!

  12. skenks

    September 23, 2013 at 10:47 am

    Awwww well said, Yinka Craig was truly an amazing man and he has extremely wonderful kids to show for it

  13. tippy

    September 23, 2013 at 11:11 am

    I remember watching him on Am Express and he also made watching Newsline quite interesting. May he continue to rest in peace.

  14. Vanessa

    September 23, 2013 at 11:13 am

    I loved watching and listen to Yinka’s ” Sunday Sunday Tonic”. He was indeed a good broadcaster. May his soul continue to rest in peace and may his goodwill last long.

  15. Bobosteke & Lara Bian

    September 23, 2013 at 11:22 am

    First off let me say i feel very honored to comment on such a man as your father. My mum and your parents grew up as childhood friends and had brief stints in the theater together.There’s this one she often talks about “Wind against my Soul” or was it “Candle in the Wind” (i forget) where your mum played an unforgettable lead character. Although life happened and they all went their separate ways, my mum often exclaimed fondly whenever she saw your dad or the few times she saw your mum on TV.

    I am not an emotionally expressive person, but i miss your dad. My memories of Newsline unfortunately date back to Frank Olize. But because of Yinka Craig, television or perhaps NTA, was redefined for me watching AM EXPRESS. I would happily land my short sighted butt directly in front of the TV and discuss intelligently (as if) along with him blocking the view from all others and wishing i was bold enough to call in. He was the valency, the combining element of the crew. He gave them chemistry that just brought the best out of everyone.

    I was my usual stony self when my mum informed me of the call that he was dead. I remember quipping that we are losing ’em faster than we make ’em. I remember crying shamelessly in private. I guess it is no longer strange to feel such affection for someone you never met.

    I have met your mum a few times usually at your cousins’ weddings. The last time both mums just held each other and cried and cried and cried and left to dance to Cool and the Gang on the dance floor.

    The beautiful ones are not yet born and that’s because the great ones live on.
    …….. and Yinka Craig truly lives on

    • ifeoma ifechelobi

      March 9, 2014 at 9:47 pm

      This captures my thoughts about yinka Craig absolutely! He was the colossus of AM express. He was the very life of it

  16. BrownSugah

    September 23, 2013 at 11:26 am

    Heyyyyyy………. I rememeber Yinka Craig from the days of AM Express. I would sit and watch him and his crew Marian, Sadiq Daba, Elaine and Katherine. It was always such an interesting show and something to look forward to at the break of dawn.
    It was a shocker wen I learnt he had passed. He was loved by members of my household too. A versatile, witty and intelligent man. We love and miss you sir!!!!
    nitabrownsugah.wordpress.com

  17. Zainab Musa

    September 23, 2013 at 11:41 am

    It seems like yesterday
    I was just two weeks ago when I was actually talking about newsline and trying to recall your dad’s name after . But could only recall Patrick Oke’s name.
    Those were the days when newsline was news .
    The eloquent and adventurous person he was.
    What mysterious stories they presented and historical places he take you to by just sitting in your home.
    His memories lives on
    We loved and missed him
    RIP Baba

    ,

  18. Tess

    September 23, 2013 at 11:45 am

    I also remember him on AM Express and how eloquent he was. Dear Dr Craig, your father lived well, take pride in that fact. Everyone dies, some at old age, some younger, but what matters most is how well we lived. Your dad did his best, I hope his legacy will encourage you and your family to aspire to leave your own legacy behind too. May his soul and the souls of all the faithful departed continue to rest in peace, amen.

  19. X- Factor

    September 23, 2013 at 12:00 pm

    Quintessential that’s the word!…
    Such men who truly deserves a biography, video documentary….
    Such men who, on the sands of life, left their foot prints…

  20. corolla

    September 23, 2013 at 12:22 pm

    He always had a smile that radiated from within.may he.continue to rest in peace

  21. kaddy

    September 23, 2013 at 12:29 pm

    Rip

  22. kaddy

    September 23, 2013 at 12:41 pm

    I remember almost all his shows and Most especially Am express your dad is not someone one can forget in a hurry may God continue to rest his soul

  23. Ebukah E. Nzeji

    September 23, 2013 at 1:03 pm

    It’s been 5 years and it only seems like yesterday. I miss seeing him on my TV screen. He made me and my family look forward to every Sunday night; courtesy of him being on air in Newsline. I remember a time when I never missed watching NTA’s Morning Express for months, because of Late Yinka Craig. Rest on, in HIS BOSOM, till we all meet at HIS FEET.

  24. Yutie

    September 23, 2013 at 1:03 pm

    I would not miss AM Express for anything because I had to hear Uncle Yinka. I was quite young but then I always looked forward to hearing an eloquent and well spoken man talk. I saw someone who was as smart as my dad and this drew me to him. May his soul continue to rest in peace.

  25. Miss Anonymous

    September 23, 2013 at 1:13 pm

    I remember him from Newsline back then. NTA was was NTA then with the likes of Yinka Craig, Ladan Salihu, Frank Olize, Ruth Benamasia, Sienne Allwell Brown, Tokunbo Ajayi, Joan O’dywer etc.
    That was good television.

    • Concerned_Boyfriend

      September 23, 2013 at 4:18 pm

      Preach!..Those were “the names” in Nigerian broadcasting…They all left an indelible mark on the nation’s history. RIP Yinka Craig…

    • Eve82

      September 23, 2013 at 9:08 pm

      Watching Newsline on Sunday evenings was a big tradition. All those names you listed just brings good memories. Continue to rest in peace Sir!

  26. UB40

    September 23, 2013 at 1:14 pm

    I remember Yinka Craig on the Morning Ride show, as young as I was, I always looked forward to watching tv on Saturday mornings. He lives on forever in our hearts.

  27. Cuter mee

    September 23, 2013 at 1:31 pm

    rest in peace sir. memories of him on am express still lingerssss. olamide, may God continue to keep you and everyone he left behind. just keep being the trail blazer that you are.God Bless

  28. Loma

    September 23, 2013 at 1:56 pm

    The man was good!

  29. Ade

    September 23, 2013 at 1:59 pm

    I remember Mr. Yinka Craig and Mr. Patrick Oke from watching Newsline. I was very young then. May God strengthen and console your family OIamide. God bless you all.

  30. jay

    September 23, 2013 at 2:09 pm

    i remember yinka craig on AM express he made it very interesting, i remember how i would be dressing up for school and be watching it till my school bus came, sometimes i d’ run late cos either him or sadiq daba where saying something funny and also i remember how my mum used to praise him when he was interviewing the president or newsline i remember him very well….this article just made me cry and by remembering the good all days….YINKA CRAIG STILL LIVES ON……

  31. jay

    September 23, 2013 at 2:10 pm

    sorry i meant old

  32. Phosh

    September 23, 2013 at 2:13 pm

    My memory of the late Mr. Craig is similar to what you all have shared, His name is indeed synonymous with broadcasting in Nigeria…What a ‘extraordinary’ man! Olamide, I dare say you have some ‘big’ shoes to fill …& I challenge you all reading this also & equally sharing how this great man has impacted your lives to seek excellence in the area of your gifting/talent so you can fulfill purpose >>>I’m thoroughly focused on achieving mine. R.I.P Yinka Craig

  33. Adaeze Ibechukwu

    September 23, 2013 at 2:32 pm

    I didn’t know he had passed on till I read your story on him (where have I been?) May his soul rest in God’s bosom. Amen

  34. laura

    September 23, 2013 at 2:48 pm

    A tv legend like yinka;those were days when tv really did
    inspired one to the possibility that one could do better in a sane
    world.pity we dont have such role models anymore.Sunday news at 9pm
    was a staple growing up. Do accept my deepest condolences.

  35. benita

    September 23, 2013 at 2:58 pm

    RIP YINKA….may God bless ur soul

  36. fashionandstylepolice

    September 23, 2013 at 3:01 pm

    RIP Yinka Craig.

  37. ejogene

    September 23, 2013 at 3:35 pm

    I remember him from AM Express with Sadiq Daba later Kate
    and Miriam, back in my secondary school days. I’ve read all the
    comments above mine, everybody remembered him in a good way. Most
    people will not be remembered like that inspite of all their wealth
    and power. He lived well, take pride in that Dr. Craig.

  38. Que

    September 23, 2013 at 3:50 pm

    You said ‘… I remember a colossus who “in my mind” stands shoulder to shoulder with other screen legends as David Frost, David Attenborough and Larry King…’

    My dear it is not in ur mind alone, I share that sentiment about him… In my mind he bore some resemblance to my dad (sans reading glasses) so I warmed up to him very easily on screen… I rmbr there was a time he was absent for a long while b4 AM Express came on air, it was refreshing having him back… I’ve lost my dad too 5yrs now and feel pretty much the same way about him… May the experiences and stories of great men such as these- in any capacity as father/husband/friend/boss or colleague, who have come n gone b4 us, inspire the coming forth of more great men in our own generation and beyond. He’s missed for sure, and I pray he continues to RIP, Amen.

  39. seyiakano

    September 23, 2013 at 4:05 pm

    I remember Yinka Craig like yesterday. Those smiles he brought to the show along with Sadiq dabar, Kathrine and Mariam. I enjoyed watching that show as that was my first encounter with the broadcasting genius with uncle yinka. I was shocked when I heard of his death and I must say I miss him so much, don’t think there’s any of the current crop of T.V presenters that comes close in terms of depth and skill. May your gentle soul continue to rest in perfect peace.

  40. Aderonke

    September 23, 2013 at 4:35 pm

    Dr Craig, your dad was a great icon on TV and his legacy lives on .I Grew up watching you on TV. May his works be ever green. Sleep on sir!

  41. mii2

    September 23, 2013 at 4:55 pm

    I enjoyed all the shows he was involved in. Newline especially cause as you explained it, it was “cultural adventure into the wonderfully diverse country that is Nigeria”.
    I remember the first I met him at 3.. road … close in Festac Town back then. He was very pleasant to speak to and his wife i remember her too.
    Lord knows best.

  42. Precious

    September 23, 2013 at 4:59 pm

    Your dad was handsome and dashing. The programs he anchor became immediate hits and were given prime time slots on NTA. May his soul rest in peace.

  43. paris club

    September 23, 2013 at 5:14 pm

    Hmmm 5 years ago Yinka Craig lost the battle to cancer how time really flies when we lose someone so precious and dear to us. I remember his wife been interviewed on A.M express while he sat @ the back. He was asked how he coped with his wife working with the peace keeping force then. He was so excitin to watch,him and marian who was like his mini daughter on set and sadiq. His days on NTA were like the good old days. And one day I flip the papers and read the article that Yinka craig is battling with a type of cancer and the ist thing I say is not again. Y do nice,good people get striked with things like this(I just lost my mum to leukaemia @ that same time) and the final blow came that he lost the battle. May his soul continue to rest in peace and May God comfort his family. A reminder to all of us walking the earth that life is for a while, what would we be remembered for,would our exit be felt.

  44. Akintokunbo Adejumo

    September 23, 2013 at 5:22 pm

    May his soul continue to rest in peace. One of the greatest broadcaster of his age. We don’t have them like that anymore. And it was always a pleasure and honour to have met him personally several times.

  45. Kekere

    September 23, 2013 at 5:43 pm

    Uncle Yinka!!!! The very best.my Interview on Am express was amazing, just because he was there.. I miss him…. Everyday. Well done Lamz.. Kisses

  46. Femi Tunde Okunlola

    September 23, 2013 at 6:41 pm

    TRIBUTE TO THE LATE VETERAN YINKA CRAIG.

    “ACE broadcaster and sports analyst, Mr. Olayinka Craig, is dead. He died on Tuesday at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, United States of America” were the words that leaped from tabloids or words read by broadcasters across the country. A broadcast legend was gone! He died of blood cancer which he had been battling since 2006. He was aged 60.

    Five years later, and i am reminded of who this man was, and how he paved the way for my generation of Broadcasters. A man who was way ahead of his time! Way ahead!, I was surfing the internet and came across a touching tribute written by his son David Olamide Craig on the life of his father. Alongside the millions of people who remember Yinka Craig, i celebrate him with the little i remember.

    I was a kid a boy running around in my underwear when i first knew this man. However without any knowledge of what an icon, and how much of a rare priviledge i had to be this close to him. (i was a kid oblivious of all around me).

    I grew up in FESTAC Town Lagos, and i remember how we used to go to 321 Road where the family resided; same close as the Agunloye’s where a small church fellowship was hosted. The memory is quite foggy now, but i still remember clearly, my first time at the Craig’s family’s house. Nothing extraordinary but i remember the books. I come from a home where my Dad had a library of his own; resources i was years away from treasuring at the time, but even as a child, i knew their importance. Seeing same in another home was endearing. Remembering this man interacting with other individuals after house fellowships whenever he was around was something to behold. He was the life of the party. Not in a “bid to outshine others” sought of way, but people naturally warmed up to Yinka Craig, he did have his ways (smile), The smiles would naturally turn up whenever Yinka Craig would step into a room. He seemed genuinely interested in people, and believe me even then, this was very rare.

    I guess memories which a lot of people can relate with, is that of the moments we shared with Yinka Craig on the TV screen. The confidence of a man who delighted in showing the rest of the nation what he saw. Eloquent, and poised even in the most uncomfortable setting, everything changed when Yinka Craig told a story, and millions of Nigerians beheld the magic that was Yinka Craig.

    I write today to share a glimpse of what i saw of this man’s world. I didnt know him on an intimate basis as some others would gladly boast or brag of, but even from afar, I still duff my heart to a great man, who paved way for others, dared to change the world, and shared his magic with us.

    Rest in peace Yinka Craig you will never be forgotten.

    Femi Tunde Okunlola.

    1
  47. idowu

    September 23, 2013 at 6:45 pm

    Farewell Yinka Craig
    By Lanre Idowu

    “Argentina, Argentina,” Gbemisola, then my 18-month old niece would scream as soon as late Yinka Craig’s face came on the screen during the 1978 World Cup championship in Argentina. Craig was the main anchor of the Nigerian Television Authority’s daily coverage of the championship. Usually clad in a short sleeve top, he would then launch into an analysis of the championship. In an age when the Internet was yet to make research so delightful, he would reel out statistics and offer perspectives that enriched the viewer’s knowledge of the game. He did it with confidence, knowledge, zeal, and panache. His performance was so infectious that many looked forward to the daily broadcast. Of course, Gbemisola did not know the substance of what Craig was saying, but in her young mind, she had come to associate him with the rave of the moment, the Argentina World Cup. In recognition of his pervasive influence on the television viewer, it may not be an exaggeration to say that apart from the championship’s leading scorer, Mario Kempes, Craig’s name must be a close second in the consciousness of the viewing public of that period.

    Those defining traits—confidence, knowledge, zeal and panache—attracted to him the celebrity status of a knowledgeable sports-caster, respected presenter and competent instrumentalist. It is difficult to say whether it was television broadcasting that made Craig so personable to the viewer or Craig who made television broadcasting such a delightful experience. Beyond the glitz of public recognition, Craig was an affable personality and decent human being who had his head on his shoulders in a country when people of Lilliputian productivity wore their public recognition on their sleeves. His death, in 2008, was one of the painful losses the nation suffered that year.

    I first met him in flesh in the late 70s while he was a staff of the Nigerian Television Authority. We had met at Festac Town in the premises of the Federal Housing Authority. Both of us had gone there to process papers to the town houses allotted as a result of a public ballot. We had difficulty completing the procedure as we were directed from one room to the other. While this was going on, we struck up conversation. He did not throw any weight around. He simply followed the directives. When some officials recognised him and offered some assistance, he accepted it, extending it to those of us he had been chatting with earlier. Years later as residents of Festac town, we interacted. One of his favourite hunt grounds was the Baft club, a small watering hole. He was always delightful company, ever pleasant, armed with informed gist and ever willing to show off his younger colleagues from the media to his array of well-connected friends. That experience continued when he left the NTA and we usually met him and Magnus Onyibe, among others, at an eatery in Surulere, a whistling stop from the National Stadium. He had a way of attracting people to himself but he never monopolised discussion. In death, he re-enacted that feat. Friends, colleagues, associates and well-wishers gathered in large numbers at the National Stadium for his Christian wake. While the rites went on, clips of his works played on a large screen in the background, giving a visual testimony to what broadcasting in particular and Nigeria in general had lost. Side commentaries on the deceased and the Nigerian state also played out.

    Between 2003 and 2006, we had cause to work together. He served as the master of ceremony at three events organised by my company: two book presentations and one presentation of the Diamond Awards for Media Excellence (D.A.M.E.). One thing stood out in his approach: his style was usually unhurried; the pre-production meetings usually took place on phone and he often arrived at the venue within minutes of the advertised commencement. It was of course the sign of someone who was prepared and sure of himself. At the July 2004 public presentation of “The pursuit of justice and development: essays in honour of Hon. Justice Omotayo Onalaja”, he went down memory lane of his association with the man in whose honour the book was being presented. He reminded the audience that as a young lawyer, Onalaja on his return from the United Kingdom in the 60s had worked in the Ibadan chambers of his elder brother, Mr. Babasanya Craig, who later became the Hon. Chief Judge of Ogun State. He remembered with fond memories Onalaja’s usual advice that he should ensure he made a success of whatever career he embarked upon. In January 2005, when he also handled the presentation of Tunji Oseni’s “Media All the Way”, he drew on his Ibadan link again. Recalling that he made Oseni’s acquaintance while Oseni worked with Sketch in the 60s, he said Oseni always had a kind word for whatever he was doing and he, Craig, certainly looked up to him as an elder brother in the profession. The point he was making was that his interest in professional accomplishment was stimulated by the success he saw in others and that an endearing word and a sight on higher planes were propelling forces to achievement.

    At the D.A.M.E. presentation his relaxed style evoked memories of what made him such a great presenter of such programmes as Newsline, AM News. Although contracted to master the ceremony, he was ever willing to accommodate other professionals who were usually happy to spice up the night with their own contributions as citation readers. Yinka Craig shone and was not afraid to allow others shine as well. Quite unlike some so-called MCs, who go beyond the call of professional duty, rewriting the thrust and substance of the event to suit their preference for personal agenda and slap-stick humour!

    Craig was a man who not only did his job well; he also knew how to enjoy himself. He enjoyed occasional forays to the beach and I recall a particular pad he introduced me to about seven years ago on our way from a professional seminar on the island. But that is another story best left for another day.

    May his generous soul continue to rest in peace!

    Excerpted from Idowu, Lanre (2009) THE POPULAR IS SELDOM CORRECT: Selected writings on Governance, Media and Democracy 1984-2009, Diamond Publications.

  48. Ejike

    September 23, 2013 at 9:16 pm

    He was a class act. I didn’t know about his multiple talents and interests but I am not surprised at all. There was always something different about Yinka Craig.

  49. uberchic

    September 23, 2013 at 9:25 pm

    Dear Lamide, I’m sorry for your loss and I pray your family will continue to be comforted that your father left a lasting legacy. He was one of the few good men that affected many lives in immeasurable positive ways simply by doing his job!
    I first came in contact with the Late Yinka Craig in the 2000s, thanks to AM Express. (I’m in my early 20s and my memories of Newsline date back to Frank Olize and Abike Dabiri). I was very impressed by his diction, his down to earth persona and his vast knowledge of almost every topic! Indeed your father was an enigma, and I have no doubts that if he were alive, he would surpass the likes of Larry King et al.
    It was sad to learn about his death. I was away at uni and only found out when I returned home. Gosh! I was pained! I can only imagine what it must have been for your family.
    I’m thankful that just like your father, you’re also building a lasting legacy already. I’m pretty certain you may not remember this incident but it was back in 2004 whilst I was a student in The International School, Ibadan (ISI). It was at one of the ICF outreaches in 2004 and you shared a testimony. You handed out Purity Cards and asked us (the audience) to make commitments to God to abstain till we were married. What you may not know is that, that single act changed my life and I’m so thankful for it. God bless and keep you and your family. It is well.

  50. Eyak

    September 23, 2013 at 9:31 pm

    I have very fond memories of Yinka Craig. From my childhood days of watching Newsline to those AM Express feats. I remember how sad I was when I heard of his demise. May he continue to rest in peace

  51. Tayo

    September 23, 2013 at 10:19 pm

    I really liked him on AM Express. It was my favorite ‘adult’ show back when I was in Secondary School….I used to watch it every morning before going to school thanks to my mum. Good memories. RIP Yinka Craig, You live on in the wonderful memories you left behind.

  52. Miss Phillips

    September 24, 2013 at 3:48 am

    Yinka Craig… I loved him. He was such a gentle man. A gentle man with a fantastic sense of humour. The way he carried himself, the way he spoke. There was almost always something new to learn with him and he seemed to know just about everybody. My fondest memory of him happened off camera. I’m sure some of my classmates (those that were in boarding house) would remember.

    He had come on visiting day to see his daughter, Temilola. Temilola’s mum was already around and they were sort of just waiting for him. The kiss he kissed Temilola’s mum when he got in ehn? It was real! We all started clapping! LOL! Too sweet.

    It’s beautiful to see that he left a good name behind. A name that his children are proud to bear. He followed his dreams and excelled at what he did. I’m sure he left this world smiling.

    May his soul continue to rest in peace and may his children be great.

    Amen.

    • Yt

      September 25, 2013 at 6:39 pm

      @MissPhillips. I so remember those visiting days,he was always so gentle and exemplified what a gentle man was,traits he passed on to his “miss Craig”. May his gentle soul continue to RIP,he left quite big shoes for his children to fill.

  53. Ok o

    September 24, 2013 at 4:09 am

    Wow,five years already!i remember I used to look forward to watching news line and am express because of him.He was so articulate.May his soul rest in peace

  54. Abayomi

    September 24, 2013 at 4:50 am

    As a historian, I think Yinka Craig deserves a biography which will encapsulate all aspects of the great man. I would be more than happy to be a part of the work.

  55. Temitope Oluleye

    September 24, 2013 at 8:34 am

    Yinka Craig was indeed a broadcaster par excellence. R.I.P.
    temitopeoluleye.blogspot.com/

  56. Marcus Imoudu

    September 24, 2013 at 11:36 am

    Simply the best.

  57. Kemi Odusanya

    September 24, 2013 at 12:30 pm

    He was truly a great man…sad he left too soon. Your write up brought tears to my eyes as i remembered him..May his legacies not be forgotten and may he continue to rest in peace.

  58. Ayoola

    September 24, 2013 at 12:33 pm

    Wonderful and thoughtful piece. Yinka Craig! Boisterous Yinka Craig. I vividly remember his acts with Marian Anazodo, Sodik Daba, Kate Edoho and Elaine on AM then. It was was worth rising early from bed. One would rather see African Magic than AM Express these days. Yinka Craig and Marian were nothing but very pleasant on the Screen. Wish he could live on and on. Thank God, he conquered. May God continue to rest his soul. Amen.

  59. Dele A.

    September 24, 2013 at 12:37 pm

    A great man; Great husband to a great wife (Dr. Kehinde Craig) and a great father to great children (Olayinka, Olamide and Temilola).

  60. David Isi George

    September 24, 2013 at 2:15 pm

    I was also inspired by this great Broadcaster in my Childhood days,, alwaysss looked forward to 9pm Sundays for NEWSLINE on NTA… I celebrate you Sir Yinka Craig..

  61. Adebisi Ademola

    September 24, 2013 at 4:42 pm

    I really remember him. My uncle loves to see him on TV because they really look alike, he has also passed on. May God bless the living and take good care of us.

  62. Art Igweike

    September 24, 2013 at 9:24 pm

    Yes Mr. Yinka Craig’s memory is worth remembering and celebrating. He is a man that I always looked up to as a young man. He left a great legacy and he is the epitome of the word Noble and he was also a gentleman. RIP.

  63. Tunde

    September 26, 2013 at 3:06 pm

    He was indeed a rare bred and had this amiable aura about him. Fond memories of a great broadcaster. Sun re o….

  64. Jacqueline

    October 2, 2013 at 3:11 pm

    I remember when I heard about the passing away of Yinka Craig, I cried like he was my dad. I admired him so much, knew so much about everything. Made me enjoy watching the news especially on Sundays and loved am express and all it represented. My his soul continue to rest in peace. He will always be missed not only my his family and friends but people like me that never met him in his life time but where touched by his life.

  65. Fatima

    October 2, 2013 at 9:41 pm

    Dear Doc,

    I feel your loss too as my father too passed on last year of Cancer too.

    For a child born in the 70’s, it would be really hard not to remember Yinka Craig on NTA and on other shows after – he was a gentle, handsome man with impeccable diction. He was what I wanted to be when I grew up (at least the Siene All Well Brown or Ruth Benemasia version).

    Fast forward my service year when I worked at Silverbird and had to go with one of the Directors to your father’s place on Adeola Odeku – to say I was excited would be putting it mildly.

    He was every inch the gentleman I had seen on TV growing up – all that and more.

    When I heard he was ill, I prayed and asked God to make him better but hey, God needs the good guys too.

    Be comforted, he’s at peace and we will ALWAYs remember him.

  66. aleesha

    October 7, 2013 at 7:53 pm

    I lost my dad last month, so I can imagine your sense of loss, as well as the gratitude you must feel for having had such a phenomenal man as a father.
    May he continue to rest in peace, as may his legacy continue to live on in you and your siblings.
    God bless you.

  67. Aryn

    October 22, 2013 at 5:52 pm

    We remember him with fond memories.

  68. ifeoma ifechelobi

    March 9, 2014 at 9:51 pm

    This captures my thoughts about yinka Craig absolutely! He was the colossus of AM express. He was the very life of it

  69. Solar Prince

    June 3, 2014 at 11:13 pm

    I remember looking forward to Yinka Craig’s sports commentaries on TV in the 1970s . Along with his contemporaries Walter Oyatogun, Dele Adetiba and Fabio Lanipekun they defined TV sports-casting in the 1970s. It was at the same time when Earnest Okonkwo, Tolu Fatoyinbo and Ishola Folorunsho were the leading voices on radio commentaries. I remember him saying he started work as a broadcaster in Ibadan , my home town in 1967, the year of my birth. His passing marked the end of an era in Nigerian broadcasting.The Nigerian broadcasting space has not been the same ever since. Beyond his broadcasting he was a great family man and a wonderful human being. Even several months after, the thoughts and prayers of his appreciative audience are still with his family.

  70. nikky

    March 1, 2015 at 3:55 pm

    Hmmmmmm, words can’t explain how painful his death was. Uncle Yinka like he was fondly called then was like a real dad to me. His dead was shocking cos I remembered how d whole sickness started just like a skin reaction and he was telling me abt it and d series of tests Hes gone tru. Nothing more can be said. I miss him and I mean i miss my favorite uncle Yinka. May ur soul continue to know peace with the lord in Jesus name

  71. Ladi

    December 17, 2016 at 1:08 pm

    May his soul continue to rest in peace.. I grew up in the 70’s listening to many of his impartial football commentary on TV; what a man

  72. Cheyetamuno Nahshon

    April 25, 2017 at 12:13 pm

    I can still recall( if am not mistaken) him and Patrick Oke dressed in TIV traditional attire on the maiden edition of Newsline, set outdoors, along a major road. Another memorable moment was him running commentaries on the final match of the Nations Cup final between Nigeria and Algeria, that we won.

  73. clara

    August 26, 2020 at 4:43 am

    I think I remember him way back in his youthful days as the Uncle Yinka of Tales by Moonlight.

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