Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 18 September 2014

Boyzone's Ronan Keating splits from wife Yvonne

Ronan and Yvonne Keating
Ronan Keating has separated from his wife Yvonne after 12 years
25/05/2008 PA File Photo of Ronan Keating of Boyzone performing live in concert at the Odyssey Arena Belfast. See PA Feature MUSIC Boyzone. Picture credit should read: Liam McBurney/PA Photos. WARNING: This picture must only be used to accompany PA Feature MUSIC Boyzone.

Boyzone star Ronan Keating has separated from his wife Yvonne after 12 years of marriage, it has been announced.

The split is said to be "amicable" and the pair said they would continue to provide the best for their children.

It comes just months after Keating, 33, lost his close friend and Boyzone bandmate Stephen Gately.

A statement issued on the couple's behalf said: "With great sadness, Ronan and Yvonne Keating today announce their separation.

"The separation is amicable and they will continue to work together in order to provide the best for their children.

"The family ask for privacy at this difficult time."

A spokesman said there would be no further comment.

Keating and his Irish model wife have three children, Jack, Marie and Ali.

The marriage had been considered one of the strongest in showbusiness.

The couple became friends as teenagers in Ireland and married in April 1998 while on holiday on the island of Nevis in the Caribbean, after a short romance. The ceremony came shortly after the death of Keating's mother Marie, who suffered from breast cancer.

Keating, 33, has credited Yvonne with helping him get over the death of his mother, but said in an interview last year to coincide with the release of album Songs For My Mother that he still missed her every day.

He set up The Marie Keating Foundation in her memory, which funds mobile cancer awareness units in Ireland.

The Keatings were overjoyed with the birth of their first child Jack within a year of their marriage. He was followed by daughters Marie, named after Keating's mother, and Ali.

Keating said that beginning a relationship with Yvonne led him to give up the one-night stands and wild parties he enjoyed as a young man on tour with Boyzone, saying that at that moment "everything changed".

He has previously described Yvonne as his "rock", saying that he would be lost without her and has not looked at another woman since they married.

He had been just 16 when he joined Boyzone, after taking part in an open audition in his home city of Dublin, and the band became one of the most successful of the 1990s.

Boyzone reformed in 2007 and performed a sell-out arena tour the following year. The band was hit by the sudden death of member Stephen Gately in October last year but vowed to continue, releasing an album in his memory.

Keating spoke movingly of his friend and bandmate after his death, and was a pallbearer at his funeral, which he attended with the other members of Boyzone.

Keating has also carved out a successful solo career, selling more than 22 million records around the world with hits like Life Is A Rollercoaster and When You Say Nothing At All.

He is in the Guinness Book of Records as the only artist ever to have 30 consecutive top 10 singles in the UK charts.

His career highlights also include winning Ivor Novello and BMI songwriting awards.

In January, it was announced that Keating would front a Sunday show for London radio station Magic 105.4. He is currently taking a break from the show while he concentrates on his music with Boyzone.

Keating has been successful as a television presenter, and will become a judge on the Australian version of the X Factor later this year. He has previously appeared on the UK hit show alongside judge Louis Walsh, the manager of Boyzone.

Keating has also worked with Cancer Research UK and has worked as an ambassador for Christian Aid, and last year climbed Mount Kilimanjaro with other celebrities to raise money for Comic Relief.

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