Princess Diana would have been 58 years old this week. Both of Diana’s sons marked her birthday in quiet ways – William surprised well-wishers outside of Kensington Palace, thanking them for marking his mother’s birthday every year and keeping her memory alive. On Tuesday, Harry went to the Diana Award Mentoring Appeal event in London. He’s not a patron to the event, but the Diana Award charity have been around for 20 years, and Harry has done events with them in the past. Harry met with young people who are part of the mentoring program and with some of the businesses who are part of the program. He also made a speech:
“I’m struck by a few things today, most of which is the power of the invisible role model,” he said. “The person who may be sitting here today that doesn’t realize that someone looks up to them, that — for that person — you inspire them to be kinder, better, greater, more successful, more impactful. Perhaps it’s the newfound clarity I have as a father, knowing that my son will always be watching what I do, mimicking my behavior, one day maybe even following in my footsteps. But it’s not just my role as a father that shows me that; it’s in the people I see every day that don’t realize how inspirational they are to those watching.”
Harry added that his mother, who died in a 1997 car crash in Paris, inspired people around the world.: “My mother, Princess Diana, was a role model to so many, without realizing the impact she would have on so many lives. You don’t have to be a princess or a public figure to be a role model, in fact it’s equally valuable if you’re not because it’s more relatable,” he said. “Being a role model and mentor can help heal the wounds of your own past and create a better future for someone else.”
Prince Harry concluded his speech, “To the mentees here today, I am incredibly proud of what you’ve achieved, and I can safely say that my mother, who would have turned 58 yesterday, would feel the same.”
This just made me sad – I know there are a lot of people who are like “Diana wasn’t perfect!” and yes, that’s true. But she didn’t deserve to die at the age of 36 just because she wasn’t perfect. Her impact was incredible – she fundamentally changed the royal family across the board. She changed the nature of celebrity, and she changed so many conversations, from HIV/AIDS to gay rights to landmines to mental health and on and on. Diana would have loved this charity, and I’m glad Harry is involved with it.
Photos courtesy of Getty.
I am 36 now and I have done so much.
I just find it sad Diana never had a chance to live as an adult.
She got married too young and had kids immediately.
And whatever her faults, she was extremely young and in love with Charles and he didn’t love her. It was a disaster.
And she was used by her parents who should have put a stop to the whole thing, but as a girl, her only usefulness to them was with an advantageous marriage.
Charles’ parents as well.. they knew he loved Camilla and they didn’t care. Just had to get a virgin bride.
It was said Charles and Diana were in love around the time of Harry’s conception and birth. And photos during then. You can see it.
Kudos to Harry. What a lovely speech. I love the part that a role model is best relatable. How true. But sadly our young people today idolize public figures/celebrities which makes it even more important that these people understand that.
And I grew up really star struck with Princess Dianna. Watched her wedding when I was 8. She WAS Cinderella for me not the Disney Princess in a book, but Diana flesh and bloods. And while she was not a saint, she also did a lot of good. And we shouldn’t forget that. I think she’d be so proud of Harry and what he said.
Princess Diana has a special place in my heart. She was special, one of a kind.
She was the Princess of Hearts. I miss her.
Perfect way to give back and honor his mother by Harry during his mother’s birth week. Harry’s speech was great also.
I know of so many people who have overcome personal tragedies and past mistakes simply by helping and mentoring others.
Nice speech from Harry. I liked how he talked about his mother but also pointed out that anyone can make a difference.
Diana’s legacy is complicated and I think because she was remembered as SUCH a saint for years after her death, its swinging back the other way with more negative things about her being remembered, but its nice sometimes to just remember the positive things.
Oh yes, she definitely had her demons and was used at a young age by several others, but when it came to the public role of being a princess, she was fantastic.
Nice speech from Harry. And William going out to meet the people holding the vigil was really sweet. He really made their day.
Yes, it was kind of William to greet them. I bet he planned it for a while, and no doubt he appreciates the public keeping the memory of Diana alive. I think it must be a bittersweet experience knowing the men in gray at BP and his own grandparents have largely airbrushed Diana from history.
It’s crazy how loved Diana use to be now people hate her because she got in the way of Britain’s greatest love story. As long as her sons remember her as a good person that’s all that matters.
Wait, what? @Sassy are you saying that Charles & Camilla are “Britain’s greatest love story?” I wouldn’t go quite that far.
I wouldn’t say Diana is hated
What is this nonsense?
I noticed Harry was referring to his mom as “Princess Diana”, and it got me thinking…Was Diana still considered a ‘princess’ after her divorce, or was that title taken away per royal protocol?
IIRC she was allowed to keep the “Princess” but had to lose the “HRH.”
I noticed that too, bc it was incorrect, but I imagine Harry knows everyone calls her “Princess Diana/Di” so just used that.
She was never technically Princess Diana. She was HRH The Princess of Wales. After the divorce, I think she just became “princess of wales,” losing the HRH and “the.” There may be a comma somewhere I’m missing too.
Diana, Princess of Wales (formerly HRH The Princess of Wales)
@Cee LOL! I knew I was missing a comma somewhere 😉
I guess he was using the informal term that most of the public knows her by.
That is how the public know and remember her but as Becks says its incorrect. She was never a Princess, she did however still have the title ‘Princess of Wales’ which is why the press called her Princess Diana.
Thank you all for the replies!❤
She wasn’t a princess in her own right, but technically had Princess Charles as one of her titles. Like Sophie is Princess Edward, Sarah was Princess Andrew, etc.
I still remember the photos of Diana holding the child who was HIV positive and holding hands with the patient who had AIDS. And the doctor explaining that holding hands or being in the same room with people who have the disease is not contagious.
Both subtle and powerful for it’s time.
And yes, there are still people to this day who say you can get it from a toilet seat.
That has to be one of her greatest accomplishments. I know she was complicated, but so is everyone. She tried to do her best with what she had (an appalling education, terrible family life, loveless marriage, etc) and channel that into charity work.
I remember being in tears when I saw them because not only was is such a warm and welcoming thing to do, she was wearing no gloves. A HUGE deal was made about that as well. I think that was the start of the ‘People’s Princess’ movement. Everything about that moment was historic as it should have been.
It was a huge deal. I remember it well. Oh, the pearl-clutching and hand-wringing! It made a real difference. I have always admired her for that.
Even the land mine work was considered “controversial” and “political” at the time. She was groundbreaking. I can imagine that part of why Harry loves Meg so much is her dedication to making the world a better place.
Harry seems like such a mensch. He’s really grown into his role.
I was an adult when I lost my mom, back in the ’90s. I was wrecked for a long time, and I still cry about it sometimes. I cannot even imagine what he and William went through, so young. Privilege doesn’t shield the heart.
Diana was admired because she did things from her heart and didn’t worry about whether or not she was “putting a foot right” especially when it came to charities. Others could learn from her example in that regard.
Aww, this must be such a bittersweet time of year for both William and Harry. Both of their tributes are lovely!
I went over the see the photos of William outside with the folks who came out and I gotta say, it even warm my cold heart, he looks genuinely genuine with those people. We know he is not a good actor by any means and that was quite nice and it seems everyone enjoyed the conversation.
@tiffany he surprises me sometimes. he comes across as such a cold asshole so much of the time, and then sometimes I feel like he lets his guard down and I’m like, huh. you seem….nicer. more genuine like I said.