In the wake of nurse Jacintha Saldanha's apparent suicide on Friday, Dec. 7, everyone from the royal couple to the Australian DJs who prank called the hospital are mourning her death. But none more so than the woman's family.
Saldanha's loved ones — among whom are her husband and two children — expressed their devastation in a statement.
"We as a family are deeply saddened by the loss of our beloved Jacintha," they said. "We would ask that the media respect our privacy at this difficult time."
An employee at London's King Edward VII Hospital, where pregnant Kate Middleton was being treated for extreme morning sickness, Saldanha is believed to have taken her own life following an earlier incident in which she fell victim to a prank call. On Wednesday, Dec. 5, Australian DJs Mel Greig and Michael Christian phoned the hospital pretending to be Prince Charles and Queen Elizabeth in order to get information about the Duchess of Cambridge. Fooled by the hoax, the nurse passed them on to another employee, who then provided confidential details about Prince William's wife to the callers.
The DJs in question are "deeply shocked" by Saldanha's death and have agreed not to comment or return to their radio show until further notice, a rep for the station told Us in an email. (Both Greig and Christian also deleted their Twitter accounts.)
Kate Middleton and Prince William, both 30, sent their condolences, as well. "The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are deeply saddened to learn of the death of Jacintha Saldanha," the couple said in an earlier statement. "Their Royal Highnesses were looked after so wonderfully well at all times by everybody at King Edward VII Hospital, and their thoughts and prayers are with Jacintha Saldanha's family, friends and colleagues at this very sad time."
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