Former prime minister Bob Hawke has died peacefully at his home at the age of 89.
In a statement, Mr Hawke's wife Blanche d'Alpuget said we had lost "a great Australian - many would say the greatest Australian of the post-war era."
She will hold a private funeral with his children Sue, Stephen, Rosslyn and stepson, Louis, and his grandchildren and a memorial service will be held in Sydney in coming weeks.
Mr Hawke led the Labor Party to a landslide victory in 1983 and became Prime Minister. He went on to claim election victories in '84, '87 and 1990.
"Bob Hawke and Paul Keating and their governments modernised the Australian economy, paving the way for an unprecedented period of recession -free economic growth," Ms d'Alpuget's statement read.
Mr Hawke has been remembered by all sides of politics as a man who made Australia better and as a "bloke" loved by all.
Opposition leader Bill Shorten paid tribute to Mr Hawke, saying the labour movement "salutes our greatest son".
"The Labor Party gives thanks for the life of our longest-serving prime minister and Australians everywhere remember and honour a man who gave so much to the country and people he cared for so deeply," he said in a statement.
"The Australian people loved Bob Hawke because they knew Bob loved them, this was true to the very end.
"He was a leader of conviction - and a builder of consensus. But for Bob, consensus and co-operation never meant pursuing the lowest common denominator."
Mr Hawke was Labor's most successful federal leader, but was known as much for his larrikinism as he was his policies that helped modernise post-war Australia.
He frequently sculled beers, making the Guinness Book of Records for downing a yard glass while a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford and even in his later years would indulge fans at the cricket by knocking back drinks.
But he gave up the drink while prime minister and proudly boasted he "didn't touch a drop" while in the top job.
The former ACTU leader rose through union and Labor ranks and won the party four elections, with his wife and mother to their children Hazel by his side.
He struck a transformative partnership with treasurer Paul Keating and even though their relationship soured when Mr Keating deposed him in 1991, they reconciled in recent years.
"In what was our last collaboration, Bob and I were delighted to support Bill Shorten last week in recounting the rationale we employed in opening Australia to the world," Mr Keating said in a statement.
"The country is much the poorer for Bob Hawke's passing."
After losing the prime ministership, Mr Hawke's marriage hit the rocks and eventually he and Hazel divorced, marrying his biographer Ms d'Alpuget in 1995.
Mr Hawke's death comes days before the federal election, something he predicted in December he would not see because of ill health.
Bob Hawke's most memorable quotes
"As a bloke who loved his country, still does. And loves Australians and who wasn't essentially changed by high office." - When asked how he would like to be remembered.
"Any boss who sacks anyone for not turning up today is a bum." - Amid champagne soaked celebrations after Australia II won the America's Cup in 1983.
"I just said to myself, 'If you're going to become prime minister of this country you can't afford ever to be in a position where you can make a fool of yourself or of your country', and I never had a drop for the whole period I was in parliament." - On giving up drink.
"If this was 11 years ago, I'd be getting pretty thoroughly drunk but fortunately for me and even more fortunately for others that is 11 years ago, and the only beer that will be passing my lips will be the totally non-alcoholic variety." - After being deposed as leader by Paul Keating.
"Do you know why I have credibility? Because I don't exude morality."
"The world will not wait for us." - Boyer lecture, The Resolution of Conflict, 1979.
"He's one of the worst human beings I've ever met. He treated black and white with equal contempt. He was a horrible human being." - On Zimbabwe's president Robert Mugabe.
"The previous Olympics, for instance, you have the Brits getting up, they win a medal -- they do win one occasionally -- and up goes God Save The Queen, and then Australia gets up and it's the same anthem -- now, that's crazy." - On recommending Advance Australia Fair as a new national anthem in 1984.
"I just loved him and he loved me... He was a most humble man, the most decent man I've ever met in my life and he always looked for the best in people to find positives." - On his father.
"Some people die because of unfortunate accidents, sometimes because they become so ill that doctors are unable to help them recover. Perhaps when we grow very old our bodies get worn out, or certain parts break down, like parts in an old car. None of us can be sure of how long we will live. Because this is so I think you should try not to think too much about dying but think about all the nice things around you that make life so precious to us all." - From his 1985 letter to a young girl called Tracey Corbin, struggling with the death of her grandmother."
Kim Beazley: Former Hawke cabinet minister Kim Beazley has remembered Bob Hawke as a great prime minister who "absolutely loved his fellow Australians".
The now governor of Western Australia said the former prime minister, who died in Sydney on Thursday aged 89, had a huge heart and profound respect for democracy.
"I've known nobody like him in my life and I'm devastated that his is over," Mr Beazley, Mr Beazley told The West Australian.
"For me he was everything."
Mr Beazley said Mr Hawke wanted Australia to achieve its "full potential and greatness".
"His principles focused on equality, equality of opportunity and governing for all and the understanding that Australia was a complex, multi-cultural society that had to be respected, observed, encouraged, promoted and above all incorporated within that was the right treatment of the indigenous people of Australia."
Scott Morrison: The prime minister took time out from his election campaign on Thursday evening to make a statement as he touched down in Townsville.
Mr Morrison said while Mr Hawke's achievements would be revered in coming days, Australians would most remember "the bloke" he was.
"He made Australia stronger through his contribution to public life. He had a great intellect. He had enormous passion and he had courage," he said.
"That was able to sustain him in being the longest-serving Labor prime minister of all time.
"But it was his ability to connect with everyday Australians - with a word, with that larrikin wit, with that connection and an understanding of everyday Australian life that we will most remember Bob Hawke."
Mr Morrison also noted that during Mr Hawke's tenure in the top job, he changed the national anthem to Advance Australia Fair, which includes the line "Australians all let us rejoice".
"I think we can all say as Australians all, that we rejoice in the life of Bob Hawke."
"We thank him for his service to our nation and we pray now that he rest in peace. Thank you, Bob."
Bill Shorten: Labor leader Bill Shorten paid tribute to a giant of his party at the Sydney Opera House on Thursday night.
"We have lost a favourite son," he said.
"Bob Hawke loved Australia and Australia loved Bob Hawke but his legacy will endure forever."
Mr Shorten said he spent time with Mr Hawke and his wife Blanche d'Alpuget last week, with the sun on the former prime minister's face.
"He didn't speak about himself to me," he said.
"He did, as he always does, ask about the ALP and the election."
He said Mr Hawke brought Australia together, modernised the economy and protected the environment.
"We all loved Bob Hawke. We'll miss him a great deal. May he rest in peace," Mr Shorten said.
Paul Keating: Australia is much poorer for the death of former Labor prime minister Bob Hawke, says his one-time treasurer and successor Paul Keating.
Mr Keating on Thursday evening issued a statement describing the legacy of his partnership with Mr Hawke as "the monumental foundations of modern Australia".
"With Bob Hawke's passing today, the great partnership I enjoyed with him passes too. A partnership we forged with the Australian people," Mr Keating said.
"But what remains and what will endure from that partnership are the monumental foundations of modern Australia.
"In what was our last collaboration, Bob and I were delighted to support Bill Shorten last week in recounting the rationale we employed in opening Australia to the world.
"Bob, of course, was hoping for a Labor victory this weekend. His friends, too, were hoping he would see this.
"Bob possessed a moral framework for his important public life, both representing the workers of Australia and more broadly, the country at large.
"He understood that imagination was central to policy-making and never lacked the courage to do what had to be done to turn that imagination into reality.
"And that reality was the reformation of Australia's economy and society and its place in the world.
"No one will miss Bob more than his wife, Blanche, who very sweetly, attended his every need, particularly in these later years.
"His children, Susan, Stephen and Rosslyn loved their father and were deeply committed to the precepts of his public life.
"Bob's death will be an enormous loss to them and their children, of whom, he was eternally proud.
"The country is much the poorer for Bob Hawke's passing."
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