Rio Ferdinand mourns 'soulmate' wife Rebecca who has died of cancer

Published Saturday, May 2 2015, 12:46 BST  |  By  |  Add comment
Rio Ferdinand's wife Rebecca Ellison has died after "a short battle with cancer".

Former Manchester United and England captain Rio released a statement saying his "wonderful wife and soul mate" had "passed away peacefully" at a London hospital.

Rio Ferdinand and wife Rebecca attend an exclusive night of fundraising for Crohn's and Colitis, March 2014.


Rio and Rebecca attend a charity event in 2014.

The mum of three, who was only 34, had breast cancer and died on Friday night (1 May).

In the statement posted on QPR's website, player Rio says: "My soul mate slipped away last night. Rebecca, my wonderful wife, passed away peacefully after a short battle with cancer at the Royal Marsden Hospital in London.

"She was a fantastic loving mother to our three beautiful children. She will be missed as a wife, sister, aunt, daughter and granddaughter. She will live on in our memory, as a guide and inspiration."

Rio Ferdinand shares picture of wife Rebecca to announce her death to QPR fans, 1 May 2015


Sharing a picture together, he added: "Myself, my parents Janice and Julian, along with Rebecca's parents Lesley and Stephen, would like to thank our families, friends and my club colleagues who have rallied around in these desperate days, weeks and months.

"I would also like to express my gratitude for the dedication and expertise of the staff led by Professors Johnstone and Clarke at the Royal Marsden. Their valiant efforts to prolong Rebecca's all-too-short life will not be forgotten.

"Our grief, as a family, is total. We would appreciate being allowed to mourn privately."

Rebecca and Rio married in 2009. She leaves behind Lorenz, nine, Tate, six, and four-year-old Tia.

QPR players will be wearing a black armband for the match against Liverpool at Anfield on Saturday (2 May 2015).

Friend Coleen Rooney shared her grief on Twitter with the message: "Can't believe I am actually writing this, absolutely devastated to hear the news about Rebecca. Our thoughts and prayers are with Rio, their three beautiful children and family at this sad time.

"I have such happy memories of a devoted and loving mum. Rest in peace Rebecca."

Our condolences go out to Rio and his family.