Prince William Had Flashbacks To Mom Princess Diana’s Funeral While Walking Behind Queen’s Casket

Walking in Queen Elizabeth II’s funeral procession on Wednesday was very emotional for Prince William for more reasons than mourning his grandmother. It also brought him flashbacks of his mother Princess Diana’s funeral!

On Thursday, the heir to the throne told well-wishers in Sandringham, England while viewing tributes that marching in his grandmother’s cortège brought back memories from his mother’s 1997 death. Oof. Heartbreaking.

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According to Sunday Times editor Roya Nikkhah via Twitter, the new Prince of Wales told fans the event was “very difficult” for him. As a member of the public began to get emotional at his words, he reportedly said:

“Don’t cry now, you’ll start me.”

Aw! The 40-year-old Duke of Cambridge also told the mourner he’s “learning that [the Queen] was everyone’s grandmother” based on “the way people have reacted.” She left an impact on so many.

While much of the world is mourning the 96-year-old’s death, the devastating news has been challenging for one of William’s children to grasp. Kate Middleton — now Princess Catherine — told another well-wisher that Prince George, 9, and Princess Charlotte, 7, understand their great-grandmother has passed away, but her youngest, 4-year-old Prince Louis, is having a harder time with the news. So difficult for a young child!

William was a young man himself when he first walked in a funeral procession behind his mother’s coffin. At the time of Diana’s shocking death, he was only 15 while Prince Harry was 12. They followed the casket alongside their father King Charles III, late grandfather Prince Philip, and uncle Charles Spencer. But it was a very controversial moment in history, especially for the boys.

According to reports, the brothers initially refused to walk but were ultimately persuaded by Philip. Tina Brown wrote in The Diana Chronicles:

“‘I’m not going to march in any bloody parade,’ William had wept.”

Queen Elizabeth’s husband figured out how to get Will to join, wrote Brown:

“Philip had gently cajoled him: ‘If I walk, will you walk with me?’”

He reportedly “talked to them quietly about each of the historic landmarks of London they passed” during the ceremony “to keep the boys from breaking down along the route.” It’s sad to think showing emotion would have been deemed a bad thing considering the tragic circumstances.

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In recent years, Harry has been critical of the decision to have them in the public eye following the devastating loss, saying in Angela Levin’s book, Harry: Conversations with the Prince:

“My mother had just died, and I had to walk a long way behind her coffin, surrounded by thousands of people watching me while millions more did on television.”

The 38-year-old added:

“I don’t think any child should be asked to do that, under any circumstances. I don’t think it would happen today. No child should lose their mother at such a young age and then have his grief observed by thousands of people.”

He has a point. What a stressful and vulnerable position to be in as a child already living a nightmare. The mental health advocate echoed similar remarks in his Apple TV+ docuseries The Me You Can’t See last year, noting his most significant memory of the walk:

“For me, the thing I remember the most was the sound of the horses’ hooves going along the Mall.”

It’s no wonder this week’s funeral procession brought up some challenging flashbacks for William! We’re so sorry to hear the men are having such a tough time with this loss.

[Image via John Rainford/WENN/MEGA/Anwar Hussein]

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