Who Is Kate Wright - Rio Ferdinand’s Wife: Biography, Personal Life and Career
Photo Burmingham Mail

Rio Ferdinand’s First Wife: Rebecca Ellison

Rio Ferdinand exchanged vows for the first time when he married Rebecca Ellison in 2009. The couple had dated for nine years before their wedding. In the BBC one documentary Rio Ferdinand: Being Mum and Dad, the former England international opened up about their relationship.

Rio Ferdinand revealed how he met his ex-wife. As it turns out, Rebecca wasn’t much impressed when Ferdinand approached her for the first time. He asked her to write down her number on a piece of paper, but his straightforward method didn’t work out as he had planned. However, his persistence did pay off at one point, and they ended up being husband and wife.

Ferdinand was playing for West Ham when he met Rebecca. After the two of them started dating, they moved in together in a seven-bedroom mansion in Cheshire. Ferdinand had moved to Leeds United by then, right before his famous (or, infamous! Depends on whether or not you are a Leeds fan) move to Manchester United.

Who Is Kate Wright - Rio Ferdinand’s Wife: Biography, Personal Life and Career
Photo The Sun

Rebecca comes from Essex and started her professional life as a fitness trainer. She kept pursuing her degree in accounting meanwhile, and once she finished her studies, she became a full-time accountant. Back in 2000, when her path crossed with Ferdinand’s for the first time, she was working as an accountant.

Before becoming Rio Ferdinand’s wife, she got pregnant with Rio Ferdinand’s son Lorenz. A year after the couple welcomed their first child in 2006, they got engaged in Las Vegas. Two years fast forward, Rebecca and Rio tied the knot in a high-end resort in the Virgin Islands. They spent six years as a married couple.

Even though Rio Ferdinand and Rebecca Ellison had a sweet love story, the ex-Manchester United man wasn’t faithful to his wife. In 2011, it was revealed that he had affairs with at least ten other women while being committed to Rebecca. Carley Storey, Ferdinand’s ex-girlfriend, claimed she had dated the defender before and after his marriage.

Sunday Mirror reporter Gavin Millar accused Ferdinand of pretending to be a model family man for the sake of media attention. He name-dropped ten women, who were romantically involved with Ferdinand while he was in a long-term relationship with the mother of his three children. According to Millar, Ferdinand had paid a Virgin Airways hostess in 2003 for abortion.

Ferdinand sued the tabloid for defamation but lost the court ruled against him. He admitted that some of the cheating allegations were true, but he argued that the reports had breached his privacy and put his personal life in distress. He also went on to claim that he became a changed man after the birth of his children, and solely focused on being the ideal father.

How many children did Rebecca Ellison have with Rio Ferdinand?

Ferdinand was blessed with three kids in his first marriage. He has always been protective of his children’s identity to the public. Rio Ferdinand wants his kids to grow up without the scrutiny of the public eye. For that reason, he covers the face of his children in family photographs he shares online.

Rio Ferdinand’s eldest son is Lorenz Ferdinad. As we have mentioned earlier, he was born in 2006, three years before Ferdinand had married Rebecca Ellison. He is a Brighton and Hove Albion fan. Ferdinand’s middle son Tete Ferdinand was born in 2008, just a year before his parents’ wedding.

Rio Ferdinand’s daughter’s name is Tia Ferdinand. She is his only daughter and she is five years younger than her eldest brother Lorenz. However, Tia is not the youngest child in the Ferdinand family. On December 18, 2020, Rio and Kate welcomed their first son Cree Ferdinand six months after they had announced his imminent arrival on an Instagram video.

In the said video, Lorenz, Tete, and Tia are seen (their faces are not shown on camera) browsing through their childhood photos. While they go through the pages of the picturebook, they come across a page that reads ‘’Now for the next chapter, guess what?’’ Kate then tells that she is pregnant and the kids burst into excitement hearing it.

How did Rebecca Ellison die?

Rebecca was just 34 when she passed away on May 1, 2015, after a short battle with breast cancer.

She had kept her illness private after being diagnosed in 2014 and receiving treatment.

She was thought to be clear of the disease, however, her cancer returned and spread to her bones.

When her death was announced it prompted an outpouring of grief from the footballing world.

Rio confirmed his beloved wife's death in a heartbreaking statement that read: "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.”

Photo Hello Magazine
Photo Hello Magazine

When was Rebecca Ellison's funeral?

Rebecca was laid to rest following a private ceremony in Kent in May 2015.

Many of her husband's teammates attended the funeral including former Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson.

Others also paying their respects were Robin van Persie, Edwin van der Sar, Nemanja Vidic and Darren Fletcher.

The service was described as a celebration of Rebecca's life and she allowed her three children to choose the music that would be played.

What has Rio Ferdinand said about his wife's death?

Following the death, Rio admitted that his "world collapsed" and he initially turned to alcohol to deal with his grief, but then turned to focusing on being a loving dad to his kids.

Speaking in his autobiography, he wrote: "I no longer have days when all I can do is cancel my plans and curl up in a ball.

"It is only nights that can still undo me. I usually wake up between 2-3am, when the horror of what my children have lost hits me again, keeping me awake until dawn."

After a while he started a new relationship with Kate Wright and the pair announced their engagement in November 2018.

The Manchester United star retired from football in 2015 after a trophy-laden career and in a shock announcement set his sights on a professional fight in a boxing ring.

Rio Ferdinand’s Second Wife: Kate Wright

Who Is Kate Wright - Rio Ferdinand’s Wife: Biography, Personal Life and Career
Photo Burmingham Mail

Shortly after Rio Ferdinand’s first wife passed away, he started to see reality TV star, Kate Wright. The couple started dating in 2016, just after Kate had broken up with her boyfriend and former The Only Way Is Essex co-star Dan Edgar. Kate Wright became Rio Ferdinand’s new wife and the stepmother to his three children when they got married in 2019.

Kate Wright was born on June 3, 1991, in Essex. She used to be a bank support worker before entering the realm of reality television. In 2015, she joined the Brentford-based reality show The Only Way Is Essex. During her stint at the show, she had an on-again-off-again relationship with one of the show’s stars Dan Edgar.

When did she meet Rio Ferdinand?

Kate Wright met Rio Ferdinand during a vacation in Dubai. They got introduced through mutual friends and clicked right away. In 2017, she resigned from The Only Way In Essex citing her intention to prioritise her relationship with Rio. In 2018, the couple returned to Dubai for vacation and announced their engagement there.

Kate Wright broke the news of her engagement on Instagram. She posted a photo of her alongside Rio and his three children on top of a high-rise building. The caption read ‘’The perfect end to our holiday…How could I not say yes?’’ Rio shared the picture later and revealed that his kids knew he was planning on proposing to Kate.

They celebrated their love for three days with Rio's daughter as their Maid of Honour. A few months later, in June 2018 Kate officially announced her pregnancy by posting a video of herself, telling this news to her three step-children. Kate’s child is called Cree Ferdinand

On the subject of her pregnancy, she has explicitly talked about her own experience:

“I think I cried every single day for about five weeks. You expect to be doing everything you possibly can for your baby and when you can’t… It was something I really struggled with.

Photo The Mirror
Photo The Mirror

Kate added "I was in my own little world, I felt really confused and had lots of anxiety and I didn’t think anyone understood. I think being pregnant, it does change, you are a bit more tired at times but I try to stay active as it’s good for my mind.

In September 2019, Rio Ferdinand and Kate Wright got married in a private ceremony in Marmaris, Turkey. The guests were not allowed to use cellphones when they attended the ceremony as the couple didn’t want any of their special day photos to get leaked to the media. Ashanti performed live at the wedding.

In May this year, Kate revealed that she does not want another baby after having son Cree last December.

Kate, 29, who is a stepmother to Ferdinand’s three kids Lorenz, 14, Tate, 12 and Tia, nine, said four kids in the house keeps her busy.

Photo Talking Moose
Photo Talking Moose

“I think four is enough. There’s already a lot going on and lots of crying. It’s a busy house. So I think I’d be a mad woman if I wanted any more! Four is plenty for now,” she told British tabloid, The Daily Mail.

Meanwhile, Kate revealed that her outlook towards many things in life has changed and she doesn’t look glamorous like she does on Instagram most of the time.

“You don’t realise how tired you will become [having a baby]! I knew with having three older kids it can be tiring but being a mum to a newborn is a whole new level,” she said.

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