Jon Berkery and estranged father Sir Tom Jones are living totally opposite lives.
While the 77-year-old singer is still living the high life, having not long sold his Los Angeles property for a cool £6.5 million, his son – 29-year-old musician Jon – is sleeping on the floors of homeless shelters in New Jersey.
In 1987, Sir Tom had a fling with aspiring model Katherine Berkery, 24, after the pair met in a nightclub in New York. After falling pregnant, he refused to have any part in the child’s upbringing and wouldn’t acknowledge he was his son until a bitter legal battle proved he in fact was.
After the Welsh icon sold his LA home after the death of his wife, Linda, in 2016, his illegitimate son hoped his dad might have reached out.
Speaking to the Daily Mail, the now homeless man revealed how he longed to speak to his father and build a relationship with him.
‘I just thought, now that my father’s wife has passed, he might see me,’ says Jon. ‘He’s getting old and he could be ill. I want to see him before it is too late.’
‘I’d like to talk to him about normal stuff, like: ‘How’s your life been? This is mine.”
But even after a court forced him to pay £1,700 maintenance a month until Jon was 18, the Delilah singer wanted nothing more to do with him.
‘It wasn’t something I planned,’ says the singing legend. ‘If I had planned it, I would have done something more than just financially. But it wasn’t. I just fell for it. I just fell for the seduction.’
Seemingly wishing to follow in his father’s footsteps, Jon’s music career began but never quite took off. Several years ago he left a boyband after refusing to prosper off of his dad’s name and reputation, and was then offered a number of TV appearances but turned them all down.
Three years on, Jon found himself sleeping in his car in Miami. He was subsequently arrested for drug possession and was admitted to rehab.
Jon did turn things around by securing a job in a fast food restaurant and a place to live in Jersey City, but was fired for allegedly asking for a day off. He ended up losing his rented apartment and resorted to sleeping on park benches until the cold weather forced him to seek homeless shelters.
Jon said: ‘For years I was angry and I didn’t want to see him. I was conflicted. Now I know life is too short. I need to get to know him. I just hope he feels the same,’ as he seeks out a way of contacting his father and half-brother, Mark, who was Sir Tom’s only son with his late wife.
All he wants is to meet his dad for the first time and before it’s to late, Jon claims. ‘I do not want help with my career or anything like that,’ he reiterates, in case he was accused of having an agenda.
So far, Jon hasn’t had any success in contacting his father and, after almost 30 years of zero contact, doesn’t seem like things are about to change.
Yahoo Celebrity has reached out to Tom Jones for comment.