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Tom Parker of The Wanted has died at the age of 33

He was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumour in 2020

By Joe Goggins

Tom Parker of The Wanted
Parker had been fighting a brain tumour since 2020. (Photo: Alamy)

Tom Parker, founding member of boy band The Wanted, has died at the age of 33.

His wife, Kelsey, confirmed the news today (March 30). ”It is with the heaviest of hearts that we confirm Tom passed away peacefully earlier today with all of his family by his side,” she said in an Instagram post. “Our hearts are broken, Tom was the centre of our world and we can’t imagine life without his infectious smile and energetic presence.” 

“We are truly thankful for the outpouring of love and support ,” the message went on, “and ask that we all unite to ensure Tom’s light continues to shine for his beautiful children. Thank you to everyone who has supported in his care throughout, he fought until the very end. I’m forever proud of you.” Parker leaves behind a daughter and a son.

Parker, from Bolton, was diagnosed with an inoperable grade 4 brain tumour in October of 2020, having suffered two seizures earlier in the year. He appeared to respond to treatment over the course of 2021 and announced on Twitter last November that his tumour was stable. Sadly, his condition appeared to have deteriorated in recent weeks, with Parker being forced to leave The Wanted’s latest tour.

He was among over 1000 people to audition for The Wanted when they were formed in 2009 by Jayne Collins, who was also behind The Saturdays and Parade. He was selected as one of the group’s five members at age 20, and along with bandmates Max George, Siva Kaneswaran, Jay McGuinness and Nathan Sykes, went on to release three UK top ten albums; ‘The Wanted’, ‘Battleground’, and ‘Word of Mouth’. The former two went platinum.

Additionally, they also pulled off arguably the trickiest feat for any UK pop group – breaking America. Their UK number one ‘Glad You Came’ made it to number three on the US singles chart, with their self-titled compilation album hitting the top ten on the Billboard 200. They also starred in their own US reality show on E!, ‘The Wanted Life’. The band have sold over 10 millions record worldwide. 

The Wanted went on an indefinite hiatus in 2014, with the members pursuing solo projects. They reunited last year for a show at London’s Royal Albert Hall in aid of Stand Up to Cancer, with McFly, Becky Hill, and Liam Payne also on the bill.