Rio Ferdinand has been left "heartbroken" following the death of his mother.
The 38-year-old sports pundit and his family have hailed 58-year-old Janice St. Fort as an "inspiration" after she passed away on Thursday (13.07.17) following a long battle against cancer, the disease which claimed the life of the former footballer's wife Rebecca Ellison two years ago.
Janice's children, Rio, Anton, and Sian, said in a statement: "We are heartbroken to announce that our amazing mum Janice passed away today after an ongoing battle with cancer.
"She was an inspiration to us all and was loved by everyone who knew her. She died at Guy's Cancer Unit, London Bridge Hospital, with her loving husband Peter and us, her four children, at her bedside.
"She was a devoted mother to us all, and she was the most incredible grandmother to our children.
"The whole family are devastated. Our mum was the centre and the heart of our family and has supported us all through many difficult times, always with a smile on her face. Her strength and courage, as well as her great sense of humour and immense kindness, were never-ending.
"We would like to thank all the staff at Guy's Cancer Unit for looking after our mum so well during her illness especially Marta and Joanna as well as everyone who has sent kind wishes to us all during this difficult time."
Rio's former club, Manchester United, have sent their best wishes to the father-of-three following his latest tragic loss.
They wrote on Twitter: "Our deepest sympathies go to @rioferdy5 and his family at this sad time."
Rio recently opened up in a documentary, 'Being Mum and Dad', about the struggles of raising his kids Lorenz, 10, Tate, eight, and Tia, five, alone following Rebecca's death.
He said: "You realise playing football was a f***ing walk in the park compared to telling your kids their mum isn't coming back.
"I've never had to do something so hard, so emotionally draining and testing."
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