TV’S Mel Doyle moved to tears


New Idea - - Contents - By Jenny Brown

Ten­der-hearted Melissa Doyle is some­times moved to tears by the sto­ries she cov­ers for top-rat­ing pub­lic af­fairs pro­gram Sun­day Night. Oc­ca­sion­ally, try as she might, when the emo­tion gets too much she sim­ply has to take a mo­ment to step away and clear her head.

Talk­ing re­cently to dev­as­tated mother Tonya Dwyer – whose teen daugh­ter Brit­tney cal­lously killed her own grand­dad for his $100,000 life sav­ings hid­den in the gar­den shed – was a case in point.

An­other was her close en­counter with coura­geous Brenda Lin, sole sur­vivor of her un­cle’s vi­cious mur­der of her en­tire fam­ily – her mother, fa­ther, two brothers and an aunt – at their Syd­ney home.

‘It’s al­most like I need to stop and take a mo­ment af­ter com­plet­ing some sto­ries, and those were def­i­nitely two of them,’ ad­mits Melissa, whose award-win­ning ca­reer has cov­ered ev­ery­thing from royal wed­dings to fed­eral and state elec­tions, sev­eral Olympic Games, the Bea­cons­field mine dis­as­ter, ter­ror at­tacks, bush­fires, floods and Queen El­iz­a­beth’s Di­a­mond Ju­bilee.

‘I’m very lucky, hey?’ re­flects the hard-work­ing mother to son Nick, 16 – who has just fin­ished Year 10 and is learn­ing to drive – and daugh­ter Talia, 14, who is now head­ing for Year Nine.

The jour­nal­ist be­lieves host­ing and re­port­ing for Sun­day Night is an in­cred­i­ble priv­i­lege.

‘I love what I’m do­ing and I get a lot of sat­is­fac­tion from work­ing on this pro­gram with the most amaz­ing team,’ says the former Sun­rise favourite, whose sup­port­ive hus­band John keeps the fam­ily on track while she is trav­el­ling on as­sign­ment.

‘Some­times I just look back and think: “Wow!” I’m for­ever fas­ci­nated by the places I go and the peo­ple I meet. And if view­ers think we’re han­dling sto­ries with the dig­nity and re­spect they de­serve, then we are do­ing our job.’

This year Sun­day Night was Aus­tralia’s num­ber one pub­lic af­fairs pro­gram, thanks to a num­ber of ex­clu­sives pre­sented by Mel her­self.

Busier than ever, the 47-yearold pre­sen­ter is de­lighted to con­tinue do­ing what she does best, shar­ing pow­er­ful sto­ries with the na­tion.

‘Yes, I’m get­ting older, but I can’t do much about that,’ she laughs. ‘You need to grow with age and em­brace it. I can han­dle in­ter­views I could not have done 15 years ago. We’re more valu­able, I think, as we get older. It is what it is, isn’t it? What’s the al­ter­na­tive to age­ing? ‘I’m in a re­ally good place. I’m healthy, I’m happy, I have a won­der­ful hus­band and two beau­ti­ful chil­dren. I’m watch­ing them grow into lovely young adults and I’m still able to work in the pro­fes­sion that I love. I give thanks. I’m very lucky.’

Melissa says she couldn’t be hap­pier with her life – com­plete with a great job, lov­ing hus­band John and two beau­ti­ful kids, Ni­cholas and (be­low). With a well­rounded ca­reer un­der her belt, the Sun­day Night reporter says she’s hum­bled by her role.

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