Why Princess Mary's father won't be attending her coronation

Princess Mary will become the Queen of Denmark on Sunday.

Crown Princess Mary's father, John Donaldson, will miss out on seeing his daughter becoming the Queen of Denmark on Sunday and will instead remain at home in Australia for the historic moment.

Unfortunately, the father of the future Queen is unable to travel due to his age and health, the Royal House's head of communications, Lene Balleby, has revealed.

Princess Mary and her father John Donaldson
Princess Mary's father John Donaldson won't be able to make it to her coronation on January 14. Photo: Getty

It's not the first big event John has been forced to miss, with the former maths teacher also having to miss Princess Isabella's Confirmation in April 2022.


At the time, Mary said: "Unfortunately, my father is not coming. He is getting to be an elderly gentleman and he is not well enough to take the long trip back to Denmark for a confirmation, but he is with us in our hearts."

John used to live in Denmark with his wife, Susan Moody, for a number of years, and taught at Aarhus and Copenhagen University.

John Donaldson with his wife, Susan Moody
John used to live in Denmark with his wife, Susan Moody, for a number of years and taught at Aarhus and Copenhagen University. Photo: Getty

Mary's mother, Henrietta Donaldson, sadly passed away from a heart condition in 1997, three years before Mary met Prince Frederick in Sydney during the 2000 Olympics.

In 2013, Mary spoke of the loss of her mother to the Australian Women's Weekly: "I’m sure she would be very happy to see me where I am, not only happy in my family life and as a mother, but also to see that I’ve used my new situation and the resources and skills I have to form a platform to make a difference where I can."

Queen Margrethe's abdication

Queen Margrethe II with Prince Frederik and Princess Mary
Queen Margrethe II announced her abdication on New Year's Eve, after 52 years on the throne, with Prince Frederik and Mary set to take over later this month. Photo: Getty

Queen Margrethe II announced in her New Year's speech her intention to leave the throne to Prince Frederik after her 52-year reign.

"I have decided that now is the right time," the Queen, 83, said. "The 14th of January 2024, 52 years after I followed my beloved father, I will step back as the Queen of Denmark. I leave the throne to my son the Crown Prince Frederik."


Queen Margrethe, who was 31 when she became Queen after the death of her father, said the back surgery she underwent in early 2023 led to "thoughts about the future".

"The surgery naturally gave rise to thinking about the future — whether the time had come to leave the responsibility to the next generation," she said.

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