Radio queen, Tosyn Bucknor, was not your regular celebrity. She was friendly, accessible, unassuming and a ‘helper’ of many.
An interviewer’s delight, she was not one to turn down an interview request even on short notice.
Her death on Monday night as a result of sickle cell complications, as her sister, Funke Bucknor- Obruthe revealed, was a rude shock.
She was 37.
“My darling sister and besto Tosyn passed away last night due to complications from sickle cell,” her sister wrote on Instagram.
Tosyn was found unconscious by her husband, a French national, Aurélien Boyer, when he returned home from work on Monday night, according to media reports.
The couple wedded on November 15, 2015 at the Landmark Events Centre, Oniru, Lagos.
Popularly called the ‘Voice of Lagos,’ her early morning shows aired on two local radio stations. It earned her a strong following among Nigerian youth. Her petite frame belied a great ability for storytelling, broadcasting and entertainment in general.
She was vocal about her health condition and founded the ‘These Genes Project’ in 2007 to raise awareness about sickle cell.
Her career spanned a decade and saw her attain great heights as an alternative music singer and a media personality.
A chip off the old block, her father, Segun Bucknor, who died in 2017, was a respected Nigerian musician and journalist active during the 1960s and 1970s. He was a pianist and guitarist specialising in genres ranging from soul music to pop music and to funk.
Tosyn’s legacy is deeply embedded in the media and entertainment circles where she had cut for herself a notable figure.
Birth of a star
Tosyn was born in a taxi while her mum was on her way to visit a friend. She attended Fountain Nursery and Primary School, Queens’ College, University of Lagos where she studied Law.
She observed her National Youth Service in Port Harcourt, where she taught Literature-In-English and English at Archdeacon Crowther Memorial Girls’ School.
An Eventful Career
Tosyn wanted to be an actress, singer and writer before she stumbled into radio.
She started out her journey on the radio as a Youth Corp member at Cool FM where she hosted the Fun Hour Show on Saturdays. Her full strength as an On-Air Personality manifested when she joined comedian, Tee-A, on Eko FM before joining Top Radio.
Tosyn also worked with Top Radio, earning the unanimous title of ‘The Voice of Lagos’. She moved to Inspiration FM in February 2018 where she hosted the lunch hour show until her death.
Tosyn The Music Star
She was also a singer and songwriter and had an album to her credit – ‘Pop, Rock, Soul and Jara“. As a recording artist and singer-songwriter, she worked with artists like Skales, Rooftop MCs and Eva, as well as producers like Sess, Tintin, Coldflames, Dj Klem, Knighthouse, Micworx and Cobhams.
Although she is popularly known for her time on radio, she plays the role of “Osa” on the popular MNET soap opera, Tinsel. She contributed a verse to the voter’s awareness song organised by ‘1 Thumb’.
She was also an event host for several events and involved herself in advocacy and goodwill programmes.
Tosyn also ran ONE MIC NAIJA with two partners. One Mic Naija is a concert dedicated to getting new and established acts on the same stage. A two-time The Future Awards Africa (TFAA) nominee, she is a recipient of the Nigerian Broadcasters Awards: Most Popular Radio Presenter.
Fans and colleagues have taken to social media to pay their last respect to the versatile media personality.
The People’s Democratic Party Governorship Candidate in Lagos, Jimi Agbaje, said, “I just received a sad news of the passage of Tosyn Bucknor due to complication of sickle cell. Tosyn fought a good fight.”
Singer, Johnny Drille, wrote, “I won’t be where I am but for Tosyn Bucknor. I am eternally grateful for the time she was with us. “Pray for her family to find comfort this dark time.”
Funke Akindele wrote, “Sad! Rest in peace Tosyn Bucknor. You were such a pleasant and happy lady.”
Actor and Singer, Banky Wellington, described Tosyn as one of his favourite people on earth.
“Yes it was true. I really loved her. She was so full of life and incredible positive energy. I believe she is resting in a better place, but I am hurting bad because I wasn’t ready to say goodbye.
“This world needs more people like her. Today I am completely heartbroken that I lost one of my favourite people, I will miss her forever,” he said.
Singer Ksolo wrote, “Tosyn Bucknor dead? GOD!!! This is not the right news for me. “May God Almighty grant all her loved ones fortitude to bear this loss. RIP to an angel n Area Mama.”
Comedian Seyi Law wrote, “I am not sure your energy was comparable. You were one of the kindest persons, I have ever seen. You were too adorable. You were the life of the party. “A voice that gave beauty to our radio. You were one of the best human beings, I have ever known. Tosin Bucknor, I celebrate your impacts and what you stood for.
“Heaven has yet again robbed us of an angel. May your soul find peace and be beautiful in the bosom of our Lord. Rest on and well, my dearest sister.”
Media Personality, Toke Makinwa, wrote, “You said we shouldn’t question you but Lord why? “My heart is broken and I don’t even know where to begin from. The death of Tosyn cannot be true, someone wake me up.”
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Hey you …… Who will send me those WhatsApp messages and voicenotes now to tell me that the internet never forgets or that I shouldn't have written this or I should delete or archive that post . Who will order me to bring takeaway for them now? Who will introduce me to new music now ( though your love for alternative music i didnt get oh lollll) Or even reach me new dancesteps? The real contradiction, my only sibling , my only aburo…. You told me to live my best life jare and go to where the love is …… We had great plans oh , some of which we made and discussed at this lunch an overdue one at that ….. I didn't shed one tear when my dad passed away but this one is hard oh ah it's hard……. Do your happy dance joor