This Was the First Thing Queen Elizabeth Did When She Learned of Princess Diana’s Death

Princess Diana’s death shocked the world. It was completely unexpected, and the public still grieves the loss of the princess today. But nobody felt a pain quite like the families. Diana’s family and the royal family both grieved tremendously over her loss. Thankfully, her sons, Prince William and Prince Harry, weren’t with her at the time. Rather, they were staying with the queen when the accident happened.

WINDSOR, UNITED KINGDOM – MAY 31: Princess Diana With Her Mother-in-law The Queen Watching Polo. (Photo by Tim Graham Photo Library via Getty Images)

Princess Diana died in 1997

Princess Diana’s death was one of the most tragic events of the 20th century. Only a year after her divorce from Prince Charles was finalized, Diana had finally started to move on — but she never got the chance to fully heal. Rumors suggest that Diana’s driver, Henri Paul, was attempting to outrun the paparazzi in France when he lost control of the car, which Diana was in. She died at the hospital a short time later. An investigation revealed that Paul had been under the influence of drugs and alcohol at the time of the crash. And though the public grieved greatly, nobody felt the loss like Prince William and Prince Harry.

Harry and William had been spending the summer with the queen

When Diana’s death occurred, Harry and William weren’t with her — thankfully. Though the boys had been spending a lot of time with Diana after the affair leaked, they decided to spend the summer at the queen’s house in Balmoral Castle in Scotland. The accident occurred late at night, so the queen received the news after the boys had already gone to bed. Rather than wake them up, she decided to let them sleep in until the following morning, then tell them when they awoke the next day.

Queen Elizabeth ordered all televisions and radios be removed from the home upon Diana’s death

Telling William and Harry what happened was probably the hardest thing the queen had ever had to do. No amount of royal training could prepare someone to break this kind of news. But when she did tell them, she wanted them to grieve in peace. Undoubtedly, Diana’s death would be the only thing on the news for days to come. According to Popsugar, the queen ordered every television and radio in the house to be removed, so William and Harry could deal with the news on their own terms and avoid hearing gossip. William has since said that after his mother’s death, he looked up to his grandmother, who had “been incredibly supportive” while he was growing up.

Harry and William still grieve their mother’s loss today

Though time has healed the wound somewhat, and William and Harry have both met and married and started families of their own, there will always be a scar from Diana’s death. However, both men have grown into their roles as princes (and William, as a future king) and would make their mother proud. Though things have never been the same for them since Diana’s passing, they have made the most of living in the spotlight and have had other people to lean on, including Kate Middleton and Meghan Markle, and Queen Elizabeth.