Wil­liam, Harry re­mem­ber their fi­nal call with Diana

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - ENTERTAINMENT - BY GRE­GORY KATZ

It was a typ­i­cal phone call be­tween two boys and their mother, who was on va­ca­tion in France. It was brief — the boys wanted to get back to play­ing with their cousins, not spend time on the phone chat­ting.

The brevity of that 1997 call haunts Prince Wil­liam and Prince Harry to this day — for their mother, Princess Diana, would die in a car crash that night.

“and I were in a des­per­ate rush to say good­bye, you know ‘see you later’... If I’d known now ob­vi­ously what was go­ing to hap­pen I wouldn’t have been so blase about it and ev­ery­thing else,’’ Wil­liam says in a new doc­u­men­tary. “But that phone call sticks in my mind, quite heav­ily.’’

Harry tells the film­mak­ers the fi­nal chat is some­thing he will re­gret un­til the end of his days.

“Look­ing back on it now, it’s in­cred­i­bly hard. I’ll have to sort of deal with that for the rest of my life,’’ Harry said. “Not know­ing that was the last time I was go­ing to speak to my mum. How dif­fer­ently that con­ver­sa­tion would have panned out if I’d had even the slight­est inkling her life was go­ing to be taken that night.’’

The ITV doc­u­men­tary “Diana, Our Mother: Her Life and Legacy’’ is air­ing Mon­day on Bri­tish TV. Ex­cerpts from the film, and new fam­ily pho­to­graphs, were re­leased Sun­day.

The show is one of a series of trib­utes to Diana ex­pected as the 20th an­niver­sary of her death on Au­gust 31, 1997, ap­proaches.

It is only in the last year that Wil­liam and Harry have spo­ken openly in pub­lic about their feel­ings about the sud­den loss of their mother. Wil­liam — sec­ondin-line

for the Bri­tish throne af­ter his fa­ther Prince Charles — was only 15 at the time. Harry was only 12.

The doc­u­men­tary chron­i­cles Diana’s char­i­ta­ble works, in­clud­ing her his­toric out­reach to AIDS vic­tims and her cam­paign to ban land mines.

Wil­liam and Harry also stress their mother’s fun-lov­ing side, which they say the pub­lic gen­er­ally didn’t see.

“Our mother was a to­tal kid through and through. When ev­ery­body says to me ‘so she was

fun, give us an ex­am­ple,’ all I can hear is her laugh in my head,’’ says Harry.

Wil­liam tells a story that re­veals the privileged life they led as chil­dren. One day, Diana sur­prised him by hav­ing three of the world’s top mod­els wait­ing for him when he got home from school.

“She or­ga­nized when I came home from school to have Cindy Craw­ford, Christy Turling­ton and Naomi Camp­bell wait­ing at the top of the stairs. I was prob­a­bly a 12- or 13-year-old boy who

had posters of them on his wall,’’ Wil­liam said. “I went bright red and didn’t know quite what to say. And sort of fum­bled and I think pretty much fell down the stairs on the way up.’’

Wil­liam says he fre­quently tells his chil­dren — Prince Ge­orge, 4, and Princess Char­lotte, 2 — about Diana so she can be a pres­ence in her grand­chil­dren’s lives.

“She’d be a lovely grand­mother. She’d ab­so­lutely love it, she’d love the chil­dren to bits,’’ he said.

AP PHOTO

In this photo made avail­able by Kens­ing­ton Palace from the per­sonal photo al­bum of the late Diana, Princess of Wales, shows the princess and Prince Harry on hol­i­day, and fea­tures in the new ITV doc­u­men­tary ‘Diana, Our Mother: Her Life and Legacy.’ Prince Wil­liam and Prince Harry will pay trib­ute to their mother, Princess Diana, as the 20th an­niver­sary of her death in a car crash ap­proaches in a TV doc­u­men­tary “Diana, Our Mother: Her Life and Legacy‚” which will air on Bri­tish TV.

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