"Don't cry now, you'll start me" said the Prince of Wales during an interaction with a well-wisher.
Thousands of well-wishers and members of the Royal Family along with William and Kate turned out to look at the sea of flowers left for the Late Queen outside Sandringham House, according to The Telegraph. While talking to the well-wishers, Prince of Wales, Prince William expressed how challenging and difficult it had been for him. A person from the crowd told the emotional Prince that she was close to tears, to which he replied, “Don’t cry now - you’ll start me,” indicating that walking behind his grandmother's coffin brought back memories of his mother Diana's funeral according to Jane Wells, from Lincolnshire. Catherine, Princess of Wales, said, "it’s just been such a difficult time for all of them, for the whole family.” Caroline Walters, another crowd member, said she told Prince, "thank you for sharing your grief with the nation", to which he replied, "she was everybody's grandmother", reports BBC.
Prince William told a woman sympathising with him at Sandringham that the procession yesterday had been “very difficult” and had reminded him of walking behind his mother’s coffin. He told another woman: “Don’t cry now, you’ll start me.”— Richard Palmer (@RoyalReporter) September 15, 2022
As they left Buckingham Palace to Westminster Hall, behind Queen Elizabeth ll's coffin, Prince William and Prince Harry, Prince of Sussex, kept a united front and marched together behind their father, King Charles III. This view was much similar to that of September 1997 when William, then 15, and Harry, then 13, marched behind their mother, Princess Diana's coffin 25 years ago after Diana was killed in a car crash in Paris, during which they managed to maintain an expressionless facade to cover their emotions. The young brothers were traumatically impacted, according to Express. In 2017, William expressed that there was no other pain like this one and you never get over such a thing. He said, “It’s one of these moments where you kind of think to yourself, ‘I’ve prepared myself for this, but I’m not that prepared.” She The People adds that he had to find a balance between family and duty being a son who suddenly and tragically lost his mother and “just wanted to go into a room and cry,” and a prince during his mother’s funeral. According to Express, Prince Harry also mentioned in a documentary in 2021, "It was like I was outside my body, just walking along, doing what was expected of me, showing one-tenth of the emotion that everyone was showing. I don't think any child should be asked to do that."
Hello Magazine added that American television personality Katie Couric also weighed in saying "Prince Harry and Prince William walked side by side behind their grandmother Queen Elizabeth's coffin today, a scene reminiscent of when, as boys 25 years ago, they followed their mother Princess Diana's casket."
The brothers were close for many years after their mother's death, but their lives took different turns in recent years. They kept aside their strained relationship to take part in this solemn procession. A funeral had brought two brothers closer in September, and after living separate lives for a few years, another funeral 25 years later in September brings them back together.
In a lighter moment, reports Mirror, William told one of the crowd members that “it was a good time to get out of London to dodge the crowds." and also apologized for the inconvenience caused by the security. Another crowd member observed that "they were keeping this as normal as possible."
Cover image source: Getty Images | (L) Christopher Furlong; (R) WPA Pool