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Sad news has been announced this morning by the Australia media, that one of Prince Harry's biggest royal fans, Daphne Dunne, has passed away at the age of 99.
The devastating announcement comes just days after Daphne celebrated her birthday.
The Duke and Daphne’s close relationship goes back a pretty long way, with the pair having first met in 2015 outside the Sydney Opera House. Prince Harry noticed she was wearing her late husband Albert Chowne’s military medals, and went to say hello.
Since then, the pair have been reunited numerous times on Harry’s visits down under, including a trip back in 2017, when the royal was seen warmly hugging Daphne as she waited for him in the pouring rain.
Most recently, Prince Harry and Daphne met up again in late 2018, when he and his new wife Meghan made an official visit to Sydney.
After spotting her in the crowd, the Duke of Sussex dashed over to say hello, before telling her that he wanted to introduce her to his wife.
The Duchess of Sussex appeared equally delighted to meet Harry’s long-time fan, and was overheard saying, “Oh my goodness, is this Daphne? I’m so happy to finally meet you. I’ve heard so much about you. All good things.”
At the time, Daphne congratulated Prince Harry and Meghan on their newly-announced pregnancy, saying what a wonderful Dad Harry will make. She told the couple, “It’s wonderful, the two of you. Congratulations. It’s just what Harry needs. He will be a marvellous dad. He won’t let anything stand in his way and he will be so gentle and loving.”
In a now poignant comment, Meghan excitedly replied, “Hopefully next time we see you, we’ll have a little one with us.”
Daphne appeared on the Today show after the reunion, and said of Harry, “I don’t think he has changed very much but I probably have. Seeing my age is going up, up, up. He’s a natural. He just loves what he’s doing but seems to fit in with everything he says. I’m very happy for him. I’m glad he’s got a wife now and soon a bubba.”
Meghan and Prince Harry in fact recently sent Daphne a sweet message to celebrate her birthday – although she spent the special day in the hospital.
The Duke wrote, ‘My wife and I send our warmest wishes to you on the occasion of your 99th birthday on Friday. We hope that you have a wonderful celebration surrounded by family and friends, and that you’ve managed to escape the hospital. Congratulations on reaching this important and impressive milestone before your centenary year next year. Happy birthday, Daphne.’
Our thoughts are with Daphne’s family and friends at this tough time.