Tony Junior was a well-known children’s entertainer who spent decades performing in family shows at South Shields’ Amphitheatre.
The popular performer starred in the likes of the Kids Fun-Fest and Tommy’s Parties in the town, held as part of South Tyneside Council’s holiday events programmes.
On Monday, August 23 the council confirmed that Tony had sadly passed away and paid tribute to the man who put smiles to the faces of so many families during his career.
The Mayor of South Tyneside, Councillor Pat Hay, said: “We were deeply saddened to hear of the passing of children’s entertainer Tony Junior.
“Tony was very well respected in the entertainment industry and much loved by South Tyneside audiences.
"As a firm favourite in our annual events programme, he brought smiles to the faces of so many children and families over the years.
"We are certainly going to miss his wonderful performances full of fun, games, magic and mayhem.
“Our thoughts are with his family and friends at this time.”
Tony, who performed and managed events across the North East, had been updating followers on his business Facebook page, Tony Junior - the entertainer, about his battle with coronavirus in the days leading up to his tragic death.
He spoke of how he had been hospitalised with the virus in early August and urged people to get the vaccine, something he had not been able to do before he became unwell.
In a post on the public Facebook page he said: “I’m only writing this because anyone apprehensive about the vaccine, you need to know what could be your alternative.
“Everyone who is apprehensive has their story. I'm not preaching, just letting you know of my experiences.
“It's a game of Russian Roulette. You take the vaccine or take your chances with Covid.”
Tony had been in the entertainment business since 1985. He has hosted and managed events as well as performing as a magician, Santa Claus, and a walkabout entertainer.
Families across the borough have paid tribute to Tony on social media calling him a great entertainer with a big heart.