'Tom Parker I f***ing love you': Moving tribute from The Wanted singer's wife Kelsey

31 March 2022, 10:01 | Updated: 31 March 2022, 10:41

Tom Parker's wife Kelsey Hardwick has shared a tribute to her late husband.
Tom Parker's wife Kelsey Hardwick has shared a tribute to her late husband. Picture: Alamy/Getty

By Sophie Barnett

Tom Parker's wife has described The Wanted singer as a "legend" who "changed so many lives" as she shared heartbreaking memories of her beloved husband.

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The boyband member tragically died on Wednesday at the age of 33 after being diagnosed with terminal brain cancer almost two years ago.

He leaves behind his wife Kelsey Hardwick and their two children, Aurelia and Bodhi, and his bandmates, Jay McGuiness, Max George, Siva Kaneswaran and Nathan Sykes.

Taking to her social media, Kelsey, 32, has shared a number of messages from their friends and family, showing the kind of person Tom was to those who loved him.

One message from the couple's mutual friend Stephanie Elswood sees a string of funny voice notes where Tom is heard encouraging her to pursue her dream of dancing.

Kelsey shared the post to her own Instagram story, writing: "This is Tom Parker everyone, he changed so many lives in such a small amount of time. Tom Parker I f***ing love you. Such a legend.

"Just the fact that he would send messages like this, I mean can you imagine the messages I got."

Read more: 'Our hearts are broken': The Wanted singer Tom Parker dies aged 33

Archive footage shows montage of Tom Parker after The Wanted star dies at the age of 33

She also reflected on their "soulmate" connection as she shared Michelle Keegan's tribute to Tom.

Michelle wrote: "Absolutely heartbroken for Kelsey, his beautiful babies, family and everyone who knew Tom.

"What a truly special guy. Such an honour to have known him and witness first hand their love, they really are the true definition of soulmates." Michelle then added: "Gone far too soon, rest peacefully Tom. @being_kelsey think of you always."

Kelsey then reshared the message to her own page and said: "Love you. You knew how our love was so pure and honest. Soul mates until the end."

In a post on Instagram, his "heartbroken" friend Stephanie Elswood described the father-of-two as the "purest kindest, funniest, most talented man taken far too soon".

She said he was the "most special human" who had the power to make everyone around him smile.

People in the music industry have also flooded social media with tributes to Tom, with bandmate Siva Kaneswaran leading messages.

The Irish singer wrote on Instagram: "Hey Tom, I hope you’re having a blast up there. I am so grateful that I had a chance to witness your true courage. It has been an absolute pleasure Tommy Boy. Thank you for letting us see you light up the world. Talk to you soon and see you later. Love you brother x"

Tom, who was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumour 17 months ago, was called "phenomenal" by former Strictly Come Dancing judge Dame Arlene Phillips.

"He worked so hard," Dame Arlene said.

The 78-year-old added: "He seemed to be able to battle through anything and everything, and he cast it aside in a way that just shocked me."

She also extended her sympathy to Parker's widow, Kelsey Parker, saying: "And his absolutely beautiful wife Kelsey, to lose the dad of her children, her partner, so sweet and kind and loving, the two of them, it would touch your heart just to watch them together and the love for each other.

"It's a terrible, terrible loss."

Former One Direction star Liam Payne said he was "heartbroken" to hear the news.

He added: "He was so full of life and humour, and the memories I have of him with stay with me forever.

"Sending my thoughts out to his family and his brothers in The Wanted."

Others who have shared their heartfelt condolences include the likes of Ed Sheeran, Spandau Ballet's Martin Kemp, Howard Donald of Take That, TV presenter Rylan Clark, and The Vamps band's Connor Ball.

Brain Tumour Research also released a statement hailing Parker's fundraising and campaigning.

Hugh Adams, head of stakeholder relations, said: "We are deeply saddened to learn of Tom's passing and send our deepest condolences to Kelsey, their children and all of Tom's loved ones. His loss will be greatly felt by his bandmates from The Wanted, their fans and throughout the pop world.

"Since being diagnosed with a glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) in October 2020, Tom has spoken openly and honestly about the impact of the disease and in doing so, has helped to raise awareness of the devastation caused by brain tumours."

He added: "We remember Tom for his passion, intelligence, eloquence and determination in the face of such adversity and will continue to remember him as we focus on our vision of finding a cure for all types of brain tumours."

Parker announced in October 2020 that he had been diagnosed with stage four glioblastoma and had begun radiotherapy and chemotherapy.