Aug. 31 is a difficult day for many royal watchers, but there’s no one form whom it might be more difficult than Prince William and Prince Harry. Of course, Aug. 31, 1997 is the day their mother, Princess Diana, died after a horrific car crash in Paris that also claimed the life of her boyfriend, Dodi Fayed, along with the driver, Henri Paul.
So of course, William and Harry turn to each other for support on that day, and will do so again this year, according to a report from Us Weekly. The publication reports that each year, the brothers meet up at Kensington Palace for lunch or dinner, and they discuss what their mother taught them and reminisce about how important she was in their lives.
“They talk about the little things about Diana that made them laugh: the ski trips and outings to Thorpe Park [a British amusement park, pictured above]; the effort she went to on their birthdays – all of it,” an insider told Us Weekly. “Their other halves and kids join them later.”
This year’s anniversary is likely to hold special meaning for Harry, who welcomed his first child, Archie Harrison, with Duchess Meghan in May. He and Meghan are set to take Archie with them to South Africa on a tour of the country in October, and we wouldn’t be surprised if William and Harry’s discussion of their mother’s work involves what Harry will do on that trip, along with solo visits he’s expected to make to Botswana, Angola and Malawi.
“They always discuss Diana’s charity work and brainstorm ways they can continue her legacy. Helping others and being a role model to those less fortunate is at the top of their priority list,” the source told Us Weekly.
Diana, like Harry, had a soft spot for sub-Saharan Africa. She visited Angola, where Harry is scheduled to return, in 1997 to draw attention to landmines left over from the country’s decades-long civil war and how they were destroying lives. Harry has continued his mother’s anti-landmine advocacy, having visited minefields in Angola and Mozambique himself. He also spoke for the removal of landmines worldwide at British thinktank Chatham House earlier this year.
William and Duchess Kate have likely been thinking about Diana’s importance in raising their own children and in their advocacy. One of Princess Charlotte’s middle names is Diana in honour of William’s mother. Charlotte starts school next week, and Prince George is due to return to school on the same day. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are also expected to visit Pakistan on a tour in October, and will likely hold Diana’s legacy of being of service and improving the world in their minds while there.