August 31 marked the 25th anniversary of Princess Diana’s death. Prince William and Prince Harry’s children may never have met Princess Diana, but “Grandma Diana” still has a strong presence in their lives.
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Prince William, 40, and Prince Harry, 37, spent the 25th anniversary of their mother’s death in private with their families. In the past, both have spoken on more than one occasion about the importance of sharing memories of Princess Diana with their children.
Harry said in a speech after a charity polo match for his organization Sentebale that he would talk to his children with Meghan Markle – Archie Harrison, 3, and Lilibeth Diana, 1 – about Diana always on that day.
“In Sesotho, the Bantu language, the word ‘sentebale’ means ‘not to be forgotten,'” said Harry. “Next week marks the 25th anniversary of my mother’s death and she will certainly never be forgotten. I want the day to be filled with memories of her amazing work and love for the way she did it.”
“I want this to be a day to share my mother’s spirit with my family, with my children, who I wish would have met her,” he added. “Every day I hope I make her proud.”
The Duke of Sussex surprised the latest recipients of the Diana Award, a global charity honor named after his mother, at a virtual ceremony in July.
“I see her legacy in all of you,” he told them. “I see her legacy in the Diana Award community, which spans multiple generations. I see her legacy every time I meet families, young people and children from all over the world. And I see my mother’s legacy when I look at my own children every day.”
In his AppleTV+ documentary series The Me You Can’t See, Prince Harry revealed that one of Archie’s first words was “grandma”. According to Harry, a picture of his late mother is in Archie’s room.
“We put a picture of her in his nursery and that was one of the first words he said – apart from ‘mum’, ‘dad’, it was ‘grandma’. Grandma Diana,” Prince Harry shared. “It’s the sweetest thing, but at the same time it makes me really sad because she should have been here.”
Prince William and his wife Kate Middleton also talk about Princess Diana with their three children – Prince George (9), Princess Charlotte (7) and Prince Louis (4). In 2021, the couple shared that their children make cards for their grandmother every year on Mother’s Day, posting photos of their creations on Instagram.
Princess Charlotte, whose middle name is Diana after her grandmother, decorated her pink card with a colorful heart, stickers and a sweet note saying her dad misses Diana very much. “Dear Grandma Diana, I’m thinking of you on Mother’s Day. I love you so much,” the young princess wrote. “Daddy misses you. I love you so much Charlotte.”
Prince George wrote: “Happy Mother’s Day. I love you so much and think of you always. Sending lots of love from George.”
In the 2017 documentary Diana, Our Mother: Her Life and Legacy, Prince William said he “talks about Grandma Diana all the time” with the children.
“Now we have more pictures of her around the house and we talk about her a lot more,” he added.
“It’s hard because Catherine didn’t know her, so she can’t really provide that — that level of detail,” he said. “So when I regularly put George or Charlotte to bed, I talk about her and I just try to remind them that they have two grandmothers in their lives and so it’s important that they know who she is and that Grandma Diana existed.”
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On Princess Diana’s 60th birthday in July 2021, Prince William and Prince Harry reunited to unveil a statue of her at Kensington Palace.