Meghan’s dad says heart op will keep him from cer­e­mony,

Belfast Telegraph - - FRONT PAGE - BY TONY JONES

MEGHAN Markle’s fa­ther will not walk his daugh­ter down the aisle be­cause he is due to have a heart op­er­a­tion, it has been re­ported.

Thomas Markle suf­fered an ap­par­ent heart at­tack last week and it is claimed he will un­dergo surgery in the US this morn­ing, mean­ing he will miss his daugh­ter’s mar­riage to Prince Harry on Satur­day.

He re­port­edly told celebrity web­site TMZ: “They (doc­tors) will go in and clear block­age, re­pair dam­age and put a stent where it is needed.”

It comes af­ter Mr Markle ear­lier told the site he was deter­mined to make his daugh­ter’s big day.

He had said: “Of course I’d walk her down the aisle.

“This is an his­toric mo­ment. I’d like to be a part of his­tory.

“I hate the idea of miss­ing one of the great­est mo­ments in his­tory and walk­ing my daugh­ter down the aisle.”

Ms Markle and Harry are both deeply con­cerned for Mr Markle’s welfare and are likely to put that pri­or­ity above the tra­di­tion of a fa­ther walk­ing his daugh­ter down the aisle.

The for­mer light­ing direc­tor’s at­ten­dance at the cer­e­mony at Wind­sor Cas­tle has been spec­u­lated on widely fol­low­ing al­le­ga­tions he posed for staged pa­parazzi pho­tos.

The day af­ter The Mail On Sun­day re­ported that the pic­tures, which ap­peared in a num­ber of Bri­tish news­pa­pers, were mocked up, Ms Markle’s fa­ther dropped out of the wedding, ac­cord­ing to TMZ, telling the site that he did not want to “em­bar­rass the royal fam­ily or his daugh­ter”.

But on Mon­day he missed a call from his daugh­ter and she later told him she loved him in a text mes­sage and was con­cerned about his health. De­spite her par­ents di­vorc­ing when she was six, Ms Markle has re­mained close to her fa­ther.

When she lived with her mother Do­ria Ragland in Los An­ge­les, the ac­tress spent a great deal of time with Mr Markle, who now lives in Mexico.

Mr Markle told the TMZ site his daugh­ter har­bours no ill feel­ings towards him over the al­leged col­lu­sion with the pa­parazzi agency, and he said about the Queen’s in­ter­est in events: “I don’t think the Queen is think­ing about what I’m do­ing.”

He was due to meet the Queen with Ms Markle’s mother in the days lead­ing up to the wedding be­ing staged at St Ge­orge’s Chapel at the cas­tle.

And at the same event he would have been in­tro­duced to the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Corn­wall. The depth of Harry and Ms Markle’s feel­ings for Mr Markle were re­vealed in a Kens­ing­ton Palace state­ment re­leased on Mon­day night: “This is a deeply personal mo­ment for Ms Markle in the days be­fore her wedding. “She and Prince Harry ask again for un­der­stand­ing and re­spect to be ex­tended to Mr Markle in this dif­fi­cult sit­u­a­tion.” Mean­while, mem­bers of Meghan’s ex­tended fam­ily have ar­rived in Lon­don ahead of the royal wedding.

Ms Markle’s sis­ter-in-law Tracy Doo­ley was pic­tured at Heathrow Air­port with sons Tyler and Thomas.

Ms Doo­ley, who was mar­ried to the for­mer ac­tress’s half-brother, has pre­vi­ously told ITV’s Good Morn­ing Bri­tain that she had not re­ceived an in­vi­ta­tion to the cer­e­mony at Wind­sor Cas­tle on Satur­day, ad­mit­ting she had not seen Ms Markle for 20 years.

Prince Charles and Camilla and (top) Meghan and her dad

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