Just minutes after the announcement of Prince Philip’s death, Fox & Friends host Brian Kilmeade appeared to link Prince Harry and Meghan Markle to the Duke of Edinburgh’s death after he claimed their recent interview with Oprah Winfrey had “evidently” added to the 99-year-old’s “stress”.
“There are reports that [Philip] was enraged after the interview and the fallout from the interview with Oprah Winfrey, so here he is trying to recover and he’s hit with that,” Kilmeade said on his show.
It’s not clear where these “reports” that Kilmeade was referring to, originated from.
He went on to reference Piers Morgan’s previous comments about how the Sussexes interview with Oprah shouldn’t have been aired while Prince Philip was in hospital.
“Piers Morgan was saying on his morning show, which he famously walked off of, is like ‘Really? Your grandfather is in the hospital, you know he’s not doing well, is this really the time you have to put out this interview?’ Evidently, it definitely added to his stress.”
Morgan had previously said: “I think the damage she's done to the British monarchy and to the Queen at a time when Prince Philip is lying in hospital is enormous and frankly contemptible.”
Kilmeade’s comments sparked outrage, with many people taking to social media to post disbelief at what he was implying – as well as ironic comments.
“What else could explain passing at the tender age of 99?” wrote one.
“It’s very common for 99-year olds to see that something on TV that annoys them and then suddenly die over a month later,” wrote another.
One simply wrote: “Oh FFS.”
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex posted a message on their Archewell website a few hours after Prince Philip’s death was publicly announced. The statement, on the site’s homepage reads:
“In loving memory of His Royal Highness, the Duke of Edinburgh, 1921-2021. Thank you for your service… you will be greatly missed.”
The tribute was criticised on social media for its 'lack of affection'.
Others were quick to defend the couple, arguing they're merely working through their emotions.
Harry had previously revealed that the couple had been keeping in touch with his grandfather via Zoom over the past few months, from their home in LA.
It’s thought Harry will return home to the UK for the first time in over a year, to attend the funeral. However, it’s believed that Meghan, who is expecting the couple’s second child, will remain in the US.
Harry will need to quarantine for several days after he arrives in the UK, to comply with current COVID-19 rules, and return a negative COVID test before he’s allowed to join the rest of the royal family for his grandfather’s funeral at St George’s Chapel, at Windsor Castle, according to People.
Harry and Philip had a close relationship, and were often seen laughing together in public. After Diana died, it was reported that Prince Philip took it upon himself to be a support figure for both Harry and William.
“A member of the Balmoral staff noted that Prince Philip, who had effectively lost his own mother at the age of ten when she was committed for three years to an asylum in Switzerland, was brilliantly effective with his grandsons, offering them gruff tenderness and outdoor activities like stalking and hiking to tire them out,” according to The Diana Chronicles author, Tina Brown.
It's thought that Harry’s trip back to the UK could be the first step in making amends between the Sussexes and the rest of the royals. "Harry was extremely close to his grandfather," according to a source speaking to the New York Post. "He will, of course, be there, no matter how difficult relations are between the Sussexes and the family.”
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