Rio Ferdinand's emotional account of coming to terms with reality after losing the love of his life to cancer has left Twitter heartbroken. Fans as well as several sports stars took to the social media to share their 'utmost respect' for the football legend after watching his BBC One documentary – Being Mum And Dad – on Tuesday night.
In the documentary, the former Manchester United player shares his personal journey of coping with the loss of his wife, Rebecca Ellison.
After Rebecca passed away in 2015 from breast cancer, the once-flamboyant footballer had to learn being a single parent to their three children.
Opening up about the tough phase, Ferdinand even revealed that he had suicidal thoughts as he grieved his wife's death.
Although the 38-year-old didn't succumb to those feelings, his struggles struck a chord with fans and other celebrities, who poured their support and respect on social media.
"I have no words for the admiration I have for you or the bravery you are showing everyday @rioferdy5 my heart goes out to you. Inspiring," British professional boxer Tony Bellew tweeted expressing his heartfelt thoughts.
Anton Ferdinand, player for Southend United and Rio's brother, praised the father-of-three for his incredible journey. "Words can't express how proud of u i am @rioferdy5 ino how hard doin this has been letting people (sic)," he wrote.
"Had the pleasure of sitting down with @rioferdy5 for dinner last year & what a guy, a true inspiration on & off the pitch. #BeingMumAndDad," fellow footballer Tyrone Mings shared, while 25-year-old Andre Gray tweeted, "So much respect for @rioferdy5 , heartbreaking to see! Kids couldn't ask for a better father!!"
Not just fellow sports stars and A-listers, but Ferdinand's seven million plus followers also used the opportunity to shower their favourite footballer with praises and admiration after watching his documentary on grief and loss.
One fan tweeted, "I can't put into words the respect I have for what @rioferdy5 has just done, truly heartbreaking, you're an amazing father," while another added, "Respect to Rio. Showing the world its ok,not to be ok".
Check out more heartfelt tweets and fan reactions to Ferdinand's emotional documentary below: