Rio Ferdinand praised for 'inspiring' account of losing wife to cancer
Rio Ferdinand has been widely praised for giving a powerful account of losing his wife Rebecca to cancer and raising their three children without her.
She died aged 34 in 2015, weeks after being diagnosed with the disease for a second time.
As the BBC documentary was broadcast on Tuesday, Twitter was flooded with tributes from sports stars, celebrities and public figures praising the former England footballer for his bravery.
Boxer Tony Bellew said Ferdinand was "inspiring", telling the star: "I have no words for the admiration I have for you or the bravery you are showing everyday... my heart goes out to you."
Actress Tamzin Outhwaite said: "So much respect. What a wonderful man and father you are. Well done for going on that journey You are a warrior... you should be so proud of yourself."
Former England cricketer Graeme Swann said he had "enormous respect" for Ferdinand after watching the programme, while b roadcaster Aled Jones said the account was "truly incredible", adding: "You are an amazing person Rio."
Lord Sugar described the programme as "very moving".
Mrs Ferdinand was first treated for breast cancer in 2013 and the disease returned in an aggressive form in March 2015.
Ferdinand said the three months his wife spent in hospital were "incredibly difficult".
"I felt almost betrayed by the diagnosis, betrayed by the illness because you think, 'you got it once, you are not going to get it again, surely'.
"You feel like, how can you get that type of luck. You don't think the worst-case scenario can happen."
She died within 10 weeks of the diagnosis, leaving her family with little time to prepare for her loss.
The couple's children were aged four, six and nine at the time.
The documentary followed Ferdinand as he met other families coping with bereavement and looked at the support given to parents and children who lose loved ones.
Many praised him for telling his story in a way that will help others going through similar tragedies.
Phillip Schofield tweeted: "That was amazing. You'll have helped so many people."
Comedian John Bishop said he had "total respect" for Ferdinand, adding it was "moving and informative and something that will help others I am sure".
Before the programme's broadcast, the former Leeds, Manchester United and West Ham star hit out at the Government, saying it is "wrong" to cut back the time widowed parents can receive bereavement benefits.