Markle seeks respect for dad after report he’ll skip wedding

  • May. 14, 2018 5:30 p.m.

LONDON — Britain’s Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are requesting “understanding and respect” for Markle’s father after a celebrity news site reported he would not be coming to the royal wedding to walk his daughter down the aisle, Kensington Palace said Monday night.

A palace statement on “this difficult situation” did not confirm the TMZ report that Thomas Markle had decided not to attend Saturday’s wedding at St. George’s Chapel on the grounds of Windsor Castle. The palace said earlier it would not comment on the report, and its statement did not clarify if the bride’s father would or would not be at the wedding.

“This is a deeply personal moment for Ms. Markle in the days before her wedding,” the palace statement said. “She and Prince Harry ask again for understanding and respect to be extended to Mr. Markle in this difficult situation.”

TMZ said Thomas Markle was upset over the way his decision to have staged paparazzi photos taken of him preparing for the wedding has been received and decided to miss the wedding to avoid embarrassing his daughter and the royal family.

The site also said he suffered a heart attack less than a week ago.

The palace had announced last week that Thomas Markle and his ex-wife, Doria Ragland, would play important roles in the wedding. Both were expected to meet Queen Elizabeth II and other senior royals in the days before the wedding.

Thomas Markle and Ragland divorced when their daughter was 6-years-old, but they both played an active role raising her.

He spent many years supervising the lighting and camera crew for the “Married…With Children” television show and often brought young Meghan to the set at Sunset Gower Studios. Since retired, he has been living in Mexico. The Associated Press has been unable to reach him for comment.

Thomas Markle was set to walk Meghan down the aisle during the church ceremony, and Ragland plans to ride to the chapel with her daughter. Both were to be entertained this week by the queen and other senior royals, including Prince Charles and Prince William.

TMZ said the father had a change of heart over the weekend after the British press reported he was paid to pose for photos that showed him getting measured for his wedding suit and making other preparations.

According to TMZ, he told the website he regretted allowing the pictures to be taken and acknowledged they looked “stupid.” The website reported that he said money was not his primary motivation for agreeing to be photographed and he was opting to miss the wedding to avoid embarrassing his daughter and the royal family.

Meghan Markle’s half-sister, Samantha, tweeted Monday that she is to blame for the photo debacle.

“The bad press over my father doing staged photos is my fault,” she tweeted. “The media was unfairly making him look bad so I suggested he do positive photos for his benefit and the benefit of the royal family.”

Meghan Markle is estranged from her half-sister, who has not been expected to attend the nuptials, and from her half-brother.

Harry and Markle have invited 600 guests to the wedding, which will be followed by a gala reception hosted by the queen.

Just Posted

‘Do Indians have property rights?’ Former Alberta chief’s land dispute in court

STANDOFF, Alta. — A dispute between two families over land on Canada’s… Continue reading

Missing female found near Sundre

Local rancher finds missing female

Buyers turn to letters to snag homes in Canada’s hot real estate markets

TORONTO — Monica Martins and her husband had been looking for a… Continue reading

Spin yarn unspun: Research upends theory that Vikings taught Inuit fibre skills

New research is upending old assumptions about what the ancestors of today’s… Continue reading

Woman sues fertility clinic, says lawsuit highlights need for better regulation

TORONTO — A lawsuit filed by a Toronto woman against a fertility… Continue reading

WATCH: Gazebo groundbreaking in Waskasoo

Fifty per cent of the $100,000 project is funded by a provincial government grant

Magnus Cort Nielsen wins Stage 15 of Tour de France

CARCASSONNE, France — Magnus Cort Nielsen of Denmark sprinted away from two… Continue reading

Ryan Reynolds teases ‘Deadpool 2’ extended cut at Comic-Con

SAN DIEGO — Ryan Reynolds has made a triumphant return to San… Continue reading

‘Wonder Woman,’ ‘Aquaman’ and ‘Shazam!” thrill Comic-Con

SAN DIEGO — Warner Bros. brought out all the stops Saturday at… Continue reading

All shell, no shock: Lobster prices strong, season picks up

PORTLAND, Maine — New England’s lobster industry faces big new challenges in… Continue reading

Woman killed in collision near Olds

A woman is dead after a collision west of Olds Saturday afternoon.… Continue reading

Evacuation numbers remain at nearly 1,000 as B.C. wildfires rage on

SUMMERLAND, B.C. — Officials in British Columbia’s Okanagan region hope that fire… Continue reading

Survivors recount deadly Missouri duck boat sinking

BRANSON, Mo. — “Grab the baby!” Those were the last words Tia… Continue reading

HMCS St. John’s to return to Halifax after six-month deployment overseas

HALIFAX — The countdown is on for the homecoming of a Halifax-class… Continue reading

Most Read


Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month