In honor of his late mother, Prince William visited Princess Diana’s vigil on her birthday at Kensington Palace. And we’re not crying — you are. The Duke of Cambridge surprised well-wishers when he showed up at a vigil for what would have been his late mum’s 58th birthday on Monday, July 1. The vigil, which included photos and flowers for Princess Di at the Kensington Gardens gates, had been held since 5:30 a.m. According to the Daily Mail, William arrived with little security.
Per the Daily Mail, there were six well-wishers at the time of William’s visit. Photos of the moment show the prince shaking hands with each fan and thanking them for celebrating his mother’s legacy. “William told me he knew we’d been coming here for years and thanked us for what we were doing for his mother,’ well-wisher, John Loughrey, 59, from south-west London, told the Daily Mail. “I’m still shaking now. I feel very emotional.” Loughrey also noted that William thought the fan’s badges of Princess Diana on his hat were “wonderful.”
“He said ‘I’m touched by what you do, you’ve got quite the collection,” Loughrey continued. “I told him that I pray for his mother every Sunday at Westminster Abbey and he seemed really touched. He shook my hand three times, he has a really firm shake, and I felt a beautiful feeling go through my body. I think I’m still shaking now. I feel very emotional.”
When Louhrey asked William when a statue of Princess Diana would be effected outside the palace in her memory, the prince responded, “Soon, very soon. We just want to make sure it is right. It’s important to get it right.”
Though Loughrey had never met William before, the fan said the prince made a “bee line” to him to meet him. “She was born with two hearts, one for her and one for us. People must never forget that,” he said. “I have never spoken to William before, only seen him, but he made a beeline for me and he knew who I was. I am so touched. He seemed really moved that we were here.”
Maria Scott, 48, another fan from Newcastle, was also in shock when William showed up at the vigil. “We are here to honour Diana’s legacy.” she told the Daily Mail. “We are two generations down now and there are children growing up who don’t even know who she is. It’s important that we remind them and remember. ‘None of us could believe it when William suddenly walked down the drive to come and thank us. He really is his mother’s son.”
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