Regional Express deputy chairman John Sharp said Hazelton was a quiet, humble man who would be remembered for his unbridled passion for aviation and his family.
“Max’s heart was always in the country, which is why this sentiment is emblazoned on our aircraft and remains the ethos on which this company has been built,” Sharp said.
Hazelton launched Hazelton Airlines in 1953 with one four-seater Auster Aiglet, which he crashed near Oberon, NSW, just one year later. He escaped the wreckage uninjured but was lost for six days and walked for more than 100 kilometres. The event made headlines across the country.
Hazelton floated on the ASX in 1968 and stood down as chief executive in 1995 before selling the family stake in the airline to Ansett six years later.