Rio Ferdinand on losing his wife to cancer


Former England captain Rio Ferdinand has opened up about how his children wouldn't talk about the death of their mother.

In May 2015, Rebecca Ferdinand died of breast cancer. She left behind three children, now aged ten, eight and five and husband, former England and Manchester United captain Rio.

In a candid and insightful documentary broadcast tonight on BBC One, Rio Ferdinand: Being Mum and Dad, he explores the impact of bereavement and coming to terms with his personal grief and the loss felt by the children, a journey which proved to be a healing experience for the family.

He said: "It kind of opened everything up and it was a beautiful moment just seeing them talk happily and being joyful about their mum rather than it being sad and negative moments.

"It switched it from dark to bright."

In this excerpt from Radio 4's Today programme Mr Ferdinand explains how, in the wake of Rebecca's death, he now understands why people contemplate suicide.

Rio Ferdinand: Being Mum and Dad' will broadcast on Tuesday the 28th of March at 9pm on BBC One.

Photograph: Richard Ansett | ©BBC

Tags: Rio Ferdinand breast cancer Rebecca Ferdinand

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