SIR Tom Jones has told how he feared he would not survive the death of his wife.
The music legend, 80, said the “lowest point of my life” was losing Linda, aged 75, to lung cancer in 2016 after 59 years of marriage.
The heartbreaking revelation – as he marks the fifth anniversary of her death next Saturday – came as he told how he had to see a counsellor after feeling guilty when she died.
Tom said: “I honestly didn’t think I was going to get through it.
"I had to go and see a grief therapist because I kept thinking, “Did I do enough? Was I on the case? Did she slip away without me really realising what was happening?’
“But the therapist said, “No, she had lung cancer, there is nothing you could have done.””
Sir Tom, whose hits include Delilah and It’s Not Unusual. also told how every time he gets on stage she is with him in spirit.
The singer, knighted in 2006, told The Observer Magazine: “Before she died, she said, ‘Don’t think of me dying, think of me laughing’. That’s how I remember her.”
Sir Tom was on the road in Los Angeles when he found out that Linda had been given a terminal diagnosis.
During her final fortnight, Sir Tom confessed to her he feared the grief would cripple his singing.
But she encouraged him to sell the house in LA and move to the UK where his family live.
The first track on his new album, Surrounded by Light, is inspired by her words of comfort. Called I Won’t Crumble If You Fall, it also hints at his despair.
One verse goes: “I’m growing drowsy in my chair, and I no longer ponder life. I don’t save a lock of hair, I often dream about my wife.”
The Welsh star, who married Linda aged 16, was famed for having knickers thrown at him on stage from his adoring female fans.
But The Voice judge insisted his marriage was always solid.
He said: “Linda never played second fiddle to me. She would say, ‘Always know who the number one is. Me’. She was always there first.”
You’re Not Alone
EVERY 90 minutes in the UK a life is lost to suicide.
It doesn't discriminate, touching the lives of people in every corner of society – from the homeless and unemployed to builders and doctors, reality stars and footballers.
It's the biggest killer of people under the age of 35, more deadly than cancer and car crashes.
And men are three times more likely to take their own life than women.
Yet it's rarely spoken of, a taboo that threatens to continue its deadly rampage unless we all stop and take notice, now.
That is why The Sun launched the You're Not Alone campaign.
The aim is that by sharing practical advice, raising awareness and breaking down the barriers people face when talking about their mental health, we can all do our bit to help save lives.
Let's all vow to ask for help when we need it, and listen out for others… You're Not Alone.
If you, or anyone you know, needs help dealing with mental health problems, the following organisations provide support:
- CALM, www.thecalmzone.net, 0800 585 858
- Heads Together, www.headstogether.org.uk
- Mind, www.mind.org.uk, 0300 123 3393
- Papyrus, www.papyrus-uk.org, 0800 068 41 41
- Samaritans, www.samaritans.org, 116 123
- Movember, www.uk.movember.com
- Anxiety UK www.anxietyuk.org.uk, 03444 775 774 Monday-Friday 9.30am-10pm, Saturday/Sunday 10am-8pm
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