Katie Couric Recalls Princess Diana’s Heartbreaking Remark About Her Divorce

Princess Diana’s divorce from Prince Charles was official in July 1996, after 15 years of marriage. Journalist Katie Couric recalls speaking with Diana at an event at the time — and got a rather heartbreaking response from the royal.

princess diana divorce prince charles
Princess Diana, Prince Harry, Prince William, and Prince Charles | Terry Fincher/Getty Images

Princess Diana expressed loneliness

In an essay published by InStyle, Couric shared the devastating reaction she got from Princess Diana when she asked a seemingly innocent question. It was one year before Diana’s tragic death, as Couric recalled: “I covered the royals pretty extensively at the Today show, but I didn’t actually get to meet Diana until I was invited to attend a luncheon honoring her in Chicago in June of 1996.”

Couric continued: “She was on a whirlwind trip to the U.S. I was asked to give some remarks, along with the journalist Anna Quindlen and Marlo Thomas. I was nervous to meet Princess Diana and was seated two seats away from her at lunch. We chatted and she told me she liked my pink lipstick. Funny.”

The TV anchor shared how she asked Diana: “You must be exhausted traveling and meeting so many people and having to shake hands with all these strangers. Are you excited to go home?”

The response, according to Couric, wasn’t a happy one, as the princess replied: “I would be, but I’m going home to an empty house.”

Couric noted, “I will never forget her response. This was as she was finalizing her divorce from Prince Charles, and she seemed a bit melancholy and lonely. My heart broke a little for her.”

The host did offer up a suggestion for Diana: “’Why don’t you invite some friends over and have a slumber party?’ I playfully suggested. She just tilted her head and looked at me quizzically.”

“Perhaps that’s why the world fell in love with Diana — she let people see her insecurity and vulnerability. She seemed to wear both on her sleeve,” Couric wrote, adding, “Yes, she was a princess, but somehow, she was like all of us.”

Prince Harry and Prince William honor Princess Diana’s memory

On the anniversary of Princess Diana’s death, her sons, Prince Harry and Prince William, reportedly get together over lunch or dinner at Kensington Palace.

A royal source told Us Weekly: “They talk about the little things about Diana that made them laugh: the ski trips and outings to Thorpe Park [a British amusement park]; the effort she went to on their birthdays… all of it.”

The brothers reportedly “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 insider shared.