‘Heartbroken’ Meghan Markle pens touching tribute to ‘beloved’ friend after sudden death

The Duchess of Sussex has shared a heartfelt letter about the sudden death of her friend and renowned dog trainer, Oli Juste

‘Heartbroken’ Meghan Markle pens tribute to ‘beloved’ friend
(Image credit: Getty)

Meghan Markle has revealed that she is 'heartbroken' over the loss of her 'beloved' friend, Oli Juste, who died suddenly in January.

Meghan Markle has paid tribute to her late friend, Oli Juste, in a heartfelt open letter. 

The British dog trainer and animal behaviorist, best known for his role on Channel 4's Puppy School, died 'suddenly' at the age of 45 on 15 January, leaving the Duchess of Sussex 'heartbroken' and 'reflective'. 

The royal icon first met Oli when she moved to the UK in 2018 and quickly bonded with him over their shared passion for animal adoption and welfare. He later introduced her to Mayhew, a London-based charity that works to improve the lives of cats and dogs around the world. 

Lifelong animal lover Meghan, 40, 'fell in love' with the organization's mission and went on to become its first-ever patron. 

In the heartfelt letter released on Thursday, Meghan recalls how Oli and his fiancé, Rob, 'helped care' for her own rescue dog, Guy, while he was 'recovering from a debilitating accident.' 


Meghan Markle holds a rescue dog at Mayhew in 2019 

(Image credit: Getty)

The adorable beagle broke his two legs back in 2017, not long after the former Suits had announced her engagement to Prince Harry to the world. It's understood that Guy received world-class treatment from renowned Irish vet, Professor Noel Fitzpatrick—as well as lots of TLC from his Oli and Rob. 

"They loved him as though he was their own," the Duchess added. 

She went on to reveal that Oli's death "has left me, and so many others, heartbroken and reflective—knowing that the legacy he leaves for our furry friends is beautifully simple: just love them." 

Meghan, whose three-year-long patronage with Mayhew has now come to an end, went on to credit Oli for introducing her to the charity when she "was exploring possible organizations to volunteer with." 

"He knew that beyond their adoption and rescue programs, their international work to keep animals safe, and their local work to find abandoned pets homes, that I would be drawn to their deep love of community, which transcended the animals themselves, and extended to the people around them. He was right. I fell in love with Mayhew, and soon became their Royal patron." 

The Duchess also emphasized that she will continue to show 'unwavering support' for the charity even now that she has left, and urged others to do the same. 

"I encourage each of you to support in whatever way you are able. The emotional support of a rescue animal is unparalleled—as you’ll soon realize: it is not you who saves them, it is they who save you." 

Emma Dooney
Lifestyle News Writer

Hailing from the lovely city of Dublin, Emma mainly covers the Royal Family and the entertainment world, as well as the occasional health and wellness feature. Always up for a good conversation, she has a passion for interviewing everyone from A-list celebrities to the local GP - or just about anyone who will chat to her, really.

Emma holds an MA in International Journalism from City, University of London, and a BA in English Literature from Trinity College Dublin.