Prince Harry says the tragic loss of his mother Princess Diana at just 12-years-old left “a huge hole inside” of him. “When I was a young boy I lost my mum. At the time I didn’t want to believe it or accept it, and it left a huge hole inside of me,” 36-year-old penned an emotional opening letter in children’s book Hospital by the Hill published by Harper’s Bazaar. The book, by author Chris Connaughton, tells the sad — but all too real — story of a child who loses their mother working as a frontline worker during COVID-19.
“I know how you feel, and I want to assure you that over time that hole will be filled with so much love and support,” Harry continued in his sweet and touching message. “We all cope with loss in a different way, but when a parent goes to heaven, I was told their spirit, their love and the memories of them do not. They are always with you and you can hold onto them forever. I find this to be true,” the Duke of Sussex. When speaking to Oprah Winfrey, Harry confessed he felt Diana’s “presence” through the “process” of stepping back from the Royal Family.
“If you are reading this book, it’s because you’ve lost your parent or a loved one, and while I wish I was able to hug you right now, I hope this story is able to provide you comfort in knowing that you’re not alone,” wrote. “You may feel alone, you may feel sad, you may feel angry, you may feel bad. This feeling will pass. And I will make a promise to you – you will feel better and stronger once you are ready to talk about how it makes you feel.”
Harry chose to support the book and its efforts due to his personal connection to the theme of loss, the author revealed. “I wanted it to provide a connection, support and hope through the hard and horrible times of bereavement,” author Chris Connaughton said to Harper’s Bazaar. “It’s also a tremendous honour — and a service to young people — to have The Duke of Sussex support this project and share his open, heartfelt and honest words with kids across the country.” Proceeds from the book will go to supporting child bereavement support charity, Simon Says.
Prince Harry had a strong bond with his mother, who died in a 1997 car crash when she was just 36 years old. Both Harry and his brother Prince William, 39, have paid tribute to Diana with jewelry pieces for their wives: Kate Middleton wears Diana’s sapphire engagement ring, while Meghan Markle‘s includes diamonds from a bracelet that belonged Princess of Wales. During their recent CBS interview, Meghan also sported the diamond tennis bracelet on her wrist.
“I think [my mother Diana] would feel very angry with how this has panned out and very sad, but ultimately, all she’d ever want is for us to be happy,” Harry said to Oprah during the bombshell interview, after admitting his greatest fear was “history repeating itself.” He explained they were able to move with the money left to him by Diana after her death. “Wthout that, we would not have been able to do this, so touching back on what my mother would think of this, I think she saw it coming. I certainly felt her presence throughout this whole process,” he also said.