Prince Harry got very personal on Thursday, Nov. 26, when he discussed the devastating death of his mother, Princess Diana, and how it left him with a “gaping hole.”
“I knew there would always be a gaping hole that could never be filled,” the royal, 31, remarked as he opened the Mamohato Children’s Centre in Lesotho, Africa.
Harry — who was age 12 when Princess Diana died in a Paris car crash in 1997 at age 36 — discussed how losing his mother at an early age enabled him to sympathize with the orphaned children.
“The children at the center were far younger than me, and of course, their situation was a great deal more challenging than my own,” Prince William’s younger brother said. “Nonetheless, we shared a similar feeling of loss, having a loved one — in my case a parent — snatched away so suddenly.”
The orphanage — built by Harry’s charity, Sentebale — has a dining hall that’s named after Princess Di, and will support children who have lost parents to AIDS. The late princess did much to reduce the early stigma surrounding HIV and AIDS when she was alive.
Back in October, Harry shared that his late mother inspired his love for charity work.
“It’s equally important, if not more so, to do the stuff behind the scenes,” he said of his royal duties. “It’s something that our mother did a lot. And that’s the time you really get to learn. You get the experiences and you actually get the honest truth out of people.”