Tom Parker funeral: The Wanted carries his casket as his widow says she will ‘treasure every memory’ of her ‘soul mate’ | Ents & Arts News
Tom Parker’s widow Kelsey paid tribute to The Wanted singer as a “soul mate” at his funeral, saying: “Marrying you was the best day of my life.”
Members of his family, bandmates and other close friends attended the private ceremony at St. Francis of Assisi Church in south east London.
Jay McGuiness, Max George, Siva Kaneswaran and Nathan Sykes of The Wanted served as pallbearers, carrying his coffin into the church, as Oasis’ Champagne Supernova was played to fans gathered outside.
Parker’s widow, whom he married in 2018, led a procession of three black horses through Petts Wood on Wednesday morning as hundreds of fans lined the streets for the procession before the service at Queensway.
Other porters carefully removed multicolored “Dad” flowers from the carriage, taking them inside the church before removing a heart-shaped piece of red rose spelling “Tom” from the hearse.
Parker, 33, died in Marchsurrounded by his family and bandmates, 17 months after being diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumour.
“Life with you has never been boring”
During the service in a pre-recorded message, Ms Parker shared anecdotes of how the couple first met at a nightclub before becoming famous.
She said: “I will cherish every memory because life with you has never been boring”.
Ms Parker added that the star was her ‘soulmate’ and marrying her ‘was the happiest day of my life’.
Addressing the congregation, George said he will always remember the singer’s laugh.
“He left us way too soon and we will miss him so much. People on the outside, people all over the world, do him justice. Rest easy mate,” he added.
Flowers that spelled the words Glad You Came, the title of The Wanted 2011 hit, were also seen outside the church.
Ms Parker invited fans to gather to watch the service outside on large screens as the funeral was attended by close friends and family.
Liam Payne of One Direction received a round of applause from fans outside the church.
Fans dressed in black gathered along the high street to pay their respects before falling silent as his coffin was placed in the carriage.
‘I can’t believe he’s gone,’ say fans
Superfan Stefanie Marek, 29, flew in from Austria on Tuesday to attend the funeral procession.
She said she ‘can’t believe he’s gone’ and thought she’d ‘come here and pay my respects and give him my condolences’.
“They have all become very dear to me and now that Tom is gone physically it really hit home because you wouldn’t expect it to happen so soon, especially at 33,” she added.
“It was really my childhood”
Receptionist Chloe Mayne, 25, from Plumstead, a self-proclaimed ‘super-fan’ of the late singer, said on the day of his death ‘it really hit me’.
Ms Mayne said she was 15 when she became a fan of the British-Irish boy band and had attended around 25 of their gigs, adding: ‘It was really my childhood.
Saskia Masaun, 20, from Wolverhampton, told Sky News she put Ms Parker in a healing prayer book at her local Spiritualist Church and lit a candle for the star.
Steve Barney, who played drums for the band on their early tours and festivals, said Tom Parker had “such a driving force, both onstage and off”.
He posted images of the singer on stage, adding that he was thinking of Ms Parker and their children on the day of the funeral.
Wanted fan Donna Wareing told Sky News everyone will “miss Tom so much” and shared a picture of herself and Parker at a gig in 2010.
Parker revealed in October 2020 that he was diagnosed with stage four glioblastoma and started radiation therapy and chemotherapy.