- Associated Press - Saturday, May 2, 2015

LONDON (AP) - The wife of Queens Park Rangers defender Rio Ferdinand has died aged 34 following a short battle with cancer.

The former England and Manchester United player said that his “soul mate”, Rebecca Ferdinand, died peacefully on Friday night at the Royal Marsden Hospital in London.

“She was a fantastic, loving mother to our three beautiful children,” Ferdinand said of his wife of six years. “She will be missed as a wife, sister, aunt, daughter and granddaughter. She will live on in our memory, as a guide and inspiration.”

Ferdinand thanked his family, friends and QPR colleagues who have “rallied around in these desperate days, weeks and months” and the medics whose “valiant efforts to prolong Rebecca’s all-too-short life will not be forgotten.”

She is survived by her 36-year-old husband and their three children: Lorenz, nine, Tate, six, and Tia, four.

There were tributes across English football on Saturday, with QPR and United players among those who wore black armbands. Ferdinand joined QPR last year from United, whose fans chanted “Rio, Rio, Rio” during Saturday’s game against West Bromwich Albion.

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Online: https://www.qpr.co.uk/news/article/rio-ferdinand-wife-rebecca-ferdinand-2435616.aspx

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