News has broken on Saturday morning that Rio Ferdinand’s wife, Rebecca Ellison, has passed away following a short battle with cancer.
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In a statement on the official QPR website, the former England international said:
“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.
“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.”
The pair married back in June of 2009 when he was still with Manchester United, following a long period of dating beforehand. They have three three children – Lorenz, Tate, and Tia – the first of which was born in 2006.
The veteran stopper was likely to retire at the end of the current season, but as yet it is unknown what his plans are, though this tragic news will undoubtedly play a key role in whatever decision he makes.