Meghan Markle: Dad won’t at­tend wed­ding due to health issues

Journal Pioneer - - LIVING ROOM - BY GRE­GORY KATZ AND MARTIN BENEDYK

End­ing days of spec­u­la­tion, Meghan Markle said Thurs­day that her fa­ther will not be able to at­tend her wed­ding to Prince Harry due to health prob­lems. The news came as Bri­tish mil­i­tary per­son­nel re­hearsed for a gala pro­ces­sion through Wind­sor that will fol­low Satur­day’s cer­e­mony, which will be tele­vised live around the world.

“Sadly, my fa­ther will not be at­tend­ing our wed­ding,” Markle said in a state­ment re­leased by Kens­ing­ton Palace. “I have al­ways cared for my fa­ther and hope he can be given the space he needs to fo­cus on his health.” The palace has not re­vealed any de­tails about Thomas Markle’s health issues, but the celebrity web­site TMZ says the 73-year-old re­tired Hol­ly­wood cin­e­matog­ra­pher is hos­pi­tal­ized in Cal­i­for­nia af­ter un­der­go­ing a pro­ce­dure to clear blocked coro­nary ar­ter­ies.

He re­port­edly told the web­site he was OK af­ter three stents had been inserted but needed to rest.

Thomas Markle had been sched­uled to walk his daugh­ter down the aisle when she weds her prince Satur­day in St. Ge­orge’s Chapel at Wind­sor Cas­tle.

It’s pos­si­ble that Do­ria Ragland, the bride’s mother, could fill that role in­stead. No re­place­ment has been of­fi­cially named. Meghan Markle may also choose to walk down the aisle by her­self.

Harry and Markle, who had re­mained out of the pub­lic eye in re­cent days, were spot­ted be­ing driven onto the grounds of Wind­sor Cas­tle on Thurs­day af­ter­noon.

On the streets of Wind­sor, mil­i­tary per­son­nel re­hearsed their pro­ces­sion through the town, watched by thou­sands of en­thu­si­as­tic royal fans.

The wed­ding day fes­tiv­i­ties will in­clude a 25-minute car­riage ride out­side the ground of Wind­sor Cas­tle by the new­ly­weds af­ter the cer­e­mony. More than 2,600 mem­bers of the pub­lic have been in­vited onto the cas­tle grounds to watch the pro­ces­sion.

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