Status Quo arrive in tour bus for Rick Parfitt's funeral
Status Quo guitarist Rick Parfitt has been remembered at his funeral by his former band mates – who arrived at the crematorium in the group’s double-decker tour bus.
Led by Quo frontman Francis Rossi, Parfitt’s band mate for 50 years, the group’s current line-up joined mourners at Woking Crematorium in Surrey.
Rossi was joined by Andy Bown, John “Rhino” Edwards, Leon Cave and Parfitt’s replacement as rhythm guitarist, Richie Malone.
Parfitt carved out a rock’n'roll career spanning half a century as a singer, songwriter and guitarist for the British rock band.
The veteran musician, who married three times, died aged 68 after suffering a severe infection while in a Spanish hospital, which he had visited due to complications with a shoulder injury.
On Thursday morning, Parfitt’s son Rick Jr – one of four children the guitarist leaves behind – said it was “time to say goodbye” in a Twitter post.
He added: “#RockInPeaceDad” alongside a heart emoji.
Early arrivals ahead of the service included the band’s former drummers, John Coghlan and Matt Letley.
Coghlan – part of the band’s original line-up – was reunited with Parfitt during the group’s 2013 and 2014 reunion tours.
His second wife, Patty Parfitt, was also seen arriving at the service.
One mourner carried a guitar-shaped wreath as a tribute to the late musician.
Parfitt’s death on Christmas Eve followed years of concern about his health, which had seen him stricken by multiple heart attacks and a cancer scare.
Most recently, Parfitt had been forced to withdraw from his band’s tour after he collapsed over the summer.
His slate-grey coffin arrived at the service in a four-car procession featuring floral guitar wreaths and others spelling the word “Dad”.
In a car alongside the hearse was third wife Lyndsay Parfitt and his elder children.
Lyndsay left a white rose for her late husband among the floral tributes with a note thanking him for their “wonderful” children.
She added: “I miss you and the world is an empty and sad place without you.”
His youngest children Lily and Tommy, who were not seen at the ceremony, also left messages.
Lily wrote: “Dadda, I’m missing you. Nothing will ever be the same”, while Tommy added: “I see your bright star each night as when it disappears I say ‘goodnight’ invisible Dadda”.
There was also a note from television presenter Chris Tarrant. It read: “To Rick, one of the nicest men I ever knew. Rest in peace”.
Queen’s Roger Taylor and Brian May left a message saying: “Many wonderful and hilarious memories.
“Rest in peace old friend. We will miss you, Roger and Brian.”
Another, written by Christa and Neil from United Talent Agency, heralded Parfitt as “Mr rock and roll”.