He was left heartbroken by the loss of his beloved grandfather. But David Beckham put his family tragedy aside as he met children at an HIV clinic in South Africa this week.
Despite his personal sorrow, the soccer idol still had his best smile for the youngsters, pregnant ladies and new mums at the centre in Cape Town.
He was there in his role as UNICEF ambassador while visiting the nation to lead England's 2018 World Cup bid, and assist with the current World Cup draw.
Becks was on route from LA when he got a tearful call from wife Victoria, who told him that his granddad Joseph had passed away.
But the England star decided not to fly home, saying it was what his grandfather would have wanted.
"If I had decided to go back home I know what he would have said to me, which I can't repeat," says the 34-year-old. "He was a strong East End person."
"Grandad would have shouted at me for leaving this because he was passionate about his country.
"He fought for his country and I know how proud he was of me."
The dad-of-three, who has vowed to attend the London funeral, added: "Of course any family thing like this is tough."
"My grandad was not well for quite a few months but it's something that, when it happens, nothing can prepare you for it."