Princess Diana's Longtime Friend Offers His Unfiltered Advice To Prince Harry

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle will soon be making the trip over to London for the queen's Platinum Jubilee celebrations, which will mark just the second time the pair has returned to the U.K. since they spectacularly left the British royal family in 2020 (per Vanity Fair). Although the celebrity couple won't be allowed to join Her Majesty on the balcony at Buckingham Palace for Trooping the Colour — which is reserved for working royals only — they're reportedly excited to be there nonetheless (via Town & Country). People report that the Sussexes will attend the thanksgiving service on June 3 at St. Paul's Cathedral, alongside the likes of Prince Andrew, Prince George, and Princess Charlotte. Meghan and Harry are traveling over with their two young children, Archie and Lilibet, but they won't be at the ceremony due to their age (via The Telegraph). 

The whole royal family will be present for several events throughout the celebratory weekend, though, including the Platinum Party at the Palace, the Derby at Epsom, and the Platinum Jubilee Pageant, which will wrap things up on Sunday, June 5. According to The Guardian, a spokesperson for the couple confirmed, "Prince Harry and Meghan are excited and honored to attend the Queen's platinum jubilee celebrations this June with their children." This is the first time the entire group will return to the U.K. since the Sussexes defected to America in January 2020. Although all eyes will be on their interactions with the rest of the royals, an expert wonders whether Harry should focus on fixing things closer to home first.

A royal expert encouraged Harry to reconcile with his estranged father-in-law

Richard Kay, a long-time royal reporter and personal friend of Princess Diana, reckons Prince Harry should sort out his relationship with Thomas Markle before it's too late. Writing in the Daily Mail, Kay argued, "Of all the regrets he surely privately has over his exile, the greatest must be the animosity that exists between him and his father-in-law, who remains seriously ill in hospital after a suspected stroke." Although the Sussexes are slated to attend the queen's Platinum Jubilee at the beginning of June, they've made no plans to visit Thomas, who's currently residing just a few hours from their California home.

Thomas has frequently criticized Harry in public, alongside allegedly staging paparazzi photos in the run-up to Meghan Markle and Prince Harry's wedding day. Kay asserted that Thomas should have been better prepared for Meghan to become a royal, and he puts the blame at Harry's feet for not reaching out to him, especially since Thomas has yet to meet his grandchildren. "It is not just three lives damaged by this escalating tragedy, now there are five divided by this bitter disagreement," the journalist stated. Considering how Harry wishes his wife could've known his mother, Princess Diana, Kay reckons it would be wise of him to reconcile with Thomas. 

Kay was reportedly very close with the People's Princess. In fact, he was allegedly the person Diana spoke to during the final phone call she made before her death. As Kay told The Mirror, the beloved royal was looking forward to focusing on her relationship with her sons going forward.

Thomas Markle recently suffered a suspected stroke

TMZ reported in May 2022 that Meghan Markle's estranged father, Thomas Markle, had been taken to the hospital after suffering a suspected stroke. Paramedics attended to Thomas, who lives in Mexico, before he was transported by ambulance to a facility in Chula Vista, California. The former lighting director reportedly lost his voice and communicated that something was wrong by writing his symptoms down on a piece of paper. Thomas notably suffered two heart attacks in the weeks leading up to his daughter's wedding to Prince Harry (per TMZ). He then apparently staged paparazzi shots of him getting fitted for a suit, among other things, and critics charged Meghan's dad with trying to gain sympathy through his medical conditions ahead of the nuptials.

The duchess described the paparazzi photo move as a "betrayal," per the Daily Mail, but Thomas shot back that he'd apologized to her numerous times. He also argued that what he did paled in comparison to some of her husband's dodgy past behavior, asserting, "We all make mistakes — but I've never played naked pool or dressed like Hitler like Harry did," (via the Daily Mail). At the time, Thomas also made a point of how close the Sussexes live to his home. It remains to be seen whether they'll visit Thomas in the hospital, but Meghan's half-sister spoke out about their father's health scare to let everyone know he needed some space to recuperate. 

Perhaps it would be better if the couple kept their distance for the time being.