• Tue. May 9th, 2023

Virgin Australia boss Jayne Hrdlicka shares tragic post about husband’s death

Virgin Australia CEO Jayne Hrdlicka will take personal leave following the tragic passing of her husband Jason Gaudin who died after a long battle with cancer.

In an emotional post, Ms Hrdlicka revealed her husband was diagnosed with a rare, aggressive and ultimately incurable cancer in November 2019.

“It is with a very heavy heart that I say, after a long, difficult and brave battle, he has now passed on,” she wrote in a LinkedIn post.

“For his sake, I am grateful that the suffering is behind him. For our sake, it is a devastating loss.”

Mr Gaudin had a successful corporate career in banking. He and Ms Hrdlicka shared sons Alec, who was born in 2004, and Josh, born in 2007.

“He was such a kind, loving, fun and adventurous person with a sharp and quick wit,” Ms Hrdlicka said.

“Jason will be sorely missed as a father, husband, son, brother and friend to many.

“For the next few weeks, I will be taking leave to spend time with family.”

The Virgin boss thanked everyone for their “heartfelt support and compassion” over the last couple of years as the pair worked through his various treatment phases and challenges.

“His strength, incredibly positive attitude and passion for his boys enabled him to live years beyond the expectations of his doctors. For that we are blessed and grateful.”

The family has been living in Brisbane, where Ms Hrdlicka is headquartered after she replaced Paul Scurrah as the airline’s chief executive in November 2020.

She was the former CEO of the A2 dairy company, but after two years she stood down from that role in December 2019 due to “unforeseen changes” in her personal life.

In March 2021, she revealed her husband’s cancer diagnosis was why she had left A2.

“That was kind of it. Game over. Life’s short,” she told the Sydney Morning Herald at the time.

Mr Gaudin enjoyed a successful career with American multinational Wells Fargo Bank as the head of corporate and investment banking for Australia and New Zealand January between 2013 and 2018.

Prior to that he was the managing director of Balmoral Debt Advisory for 10 years up to January 2013.

In 2014, Mr Gaudin and Ms Hrdlicka were among those thanked by Melbourne’s prestigious Scotch College for making a substantial donation to its fundraising campaign, and were honoured on the school’s donors board, according to the Daily Mail.

In the high school’s annual report for 2018, the couple were listed as Associate Fellows.

Following the tragic death of Mr Gaudin, Virgin Australia posted a message on Ms Hrdlicka’s LinkedIn page, saying: “On behalf of everyone at Virgin Australia, we send our deepest condolences to you and your family.

“We are all thinking of you during this difficult time.”

Others have also given their condolences, sharing messages of support to Ms Hrdlicka.

“Wishing you strength and may his memory be a blessing for you and your family,” one person wrote.

“This is a time to celebrate all that your husband stood for and no doubt a life well lived.

‘Thoughts and prayers with you and your family during this time of bereavement,” said another.

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