Nearly 20 years after Princes Diana died, her sons have opened up about their heartache. Prince William confessed he thought he ‘let her down,’ while Prince Harry said he still feels pain over losing his mother.
With the 20th anniversary of Princess Diana’s death taking place on Aug. 31, Prince Harry, 32, and Prince William, 35, have finally found the strength to speak about the trauma of that heartbreaking event. Harry and William gave their first on-camera interviews about Princess Diana’s death for Diana, 7 Days a two-hour documentary airing on Sept. 1. “Part of the reason why Harry and I want to do this is because we feel we owe it to her,” Prince William said, before admitting he felt responsible for his mother’s death. “I think an element of it is feeling like we let her down when we were younger.”
“We couldn’t protect her,” William added. “We feel we at least owe her 20 years on to stand up for her name and remind everybody of the character and person that she was. Do our duties as sons in protecting her.” Diana, 7 Days details the week following Diana’s death on Aug. 31, 1997. She, her boyfriend Dodi Al-Fayed, and their chauffer, Henri Paul, died when their car crashed into a pillar in the Pont de l’Alma tunnel in Paris, France. Harry and William remember those dark days, including their mother’s funeral. “It was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done, was that walk,” William said of the walk into Westminster Abbey. “It felt like she was almost walking alongside us, to get us through.”
“The people’s hands were wet from the tears they had wiped away,” Harry said of the funeral, almost holding back tears as he relived the heartbreak that can only come from laying one’s mother to rest. However, Diana, 7 Days will not be just a memorial to her death, but a celebration of her life. “When she died there was such an outpour of emotion and love which was quite shocking,” Harry said. “It was beautiful at the same time, and it was amazing now looking back at it.
“It was amazing that our mother had such a huge effect on so many people,” he added. “When you’re that young and something like that happens to you, I think it’s lodged in here, there, wherever – in your heart, in your head and it stays there for a very, very long time. I think it’s never going to be easy for the two of us to talk about our mother, but 20 years on seems like a good time to remind people of the difference that she made, not just to the Royal Family but also to the world.”
Diana, 7 Days, a documentary produced by Sandpaper Films for the BBC, airs Sept. 1 at 8PM ET/PT on NBC.
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