Royal Insider Reveals Surprising Way Prince Harry Learned of Queen's Death
Harry's strained relationship with his family has been affected by the days surrounding the funeral.
A royal insider has revealed the shocking way Prince Harry learned that his grandmother, Queen Elizabeth had died—by seeing the news online. He was en route to the Queen's bedside to say goodbye at the time, Page Six reported on Thursday. Read on to find out how things progressed on that fateful day, and what insiders say about Harry's strained relationship with his family has been affected by the days surrounding the funeral.
When the Queen died on Sept. 8, Prince Harry and his wife, Meghan Markle, were already in London for several days of charity events. Citing one "highly placed Buckingham Palace insider," Page Six reported that Harry was called to the Queen's residence Balmoral in Scotland by his father, the new King Charles III, in the morning. But another palace source told the outlet that no one from the Royal Family, or any staff, actually called Harry to tell him the Queen had died—he found out the news from online reports when his plane landed in Scotland in the early evening.
The Queen's death was announced at 6:30 p.m. local time, minutes before Harry's private plane from London landed at Aberdeen airport from London. Page Six reported that Charles and his sister, Princess Anne, were the only family members present at Balmoral when the Queen died in the early afternoon. Harry arrived at Balmoral just before 8 p.m.
The strained relationship between Harry and his family has been the source of rampant speculation in the days following the Queen's death. Harry and Markle joined his brother and wife, the new Prince and Princess of Wales, in a highly photographed walkabout on Sept. 10 to greet well-wishers and look at tributes to the Queen. It was the first time the four had been together since March 2020.
One insider told Page Six: "I think that how Harry and Meghan showed up in the past few days shows they were only hoping to do the right thing and right by everyone."
"There have been efforts on both sides … to sort of make this right," reported Gayle King of CBS Mornings, a friend of Harry and Markle who covered the funeral.
"Big families always go through drama, always go through turmoil," she said. "It remains to be seen — are they going to be drawn closer together or are they going to be drawn apart? … I have no inside information on that, but I will tell you this: It was good to see Harry standing with his family."
Social media was abuzz during the Queen's funeral itself, with a number of observers expressing umbrage that Harry and Markle had been seated in the second row. But it was soon revealed that the Queen's grandchildren had been seated according to age. That put Harry in row two, directly behind his father, the new King Charles III.