How Prince Harry, Prince William Finally Showed Unity to Honor Princess Diana

Prince Harry and Prince William unveiled a statue of their mother Diana together on Thursday and said, "We wish she were still with us," in a show of unity despite their royal rift.

The commemoration of what would have been Diana's 60th birthday has raised hopes of a reconciliation between the warring brothers.

They walked into the Sunken Garden at Kensington Palace side by side and smiling broadly at other guests. And they worked together to pull a green sheet off the monument to their mother.

The princes even appeared to share a private joke, with Prince Harry chuckling after saying something to his brother that was not picked up by the TV cameras.

Afterwards, the brothers released a joint statement, rather than separate speeches as had been suggested in some news reports.

They said: "Today, on what would have been our Mother's 60th birthday, we remember her love, strength and character—qualities that made her a force for good around the world, changing countless lives for the better.

"Every day, we wish she were still with us, and our hope is that this statue will be seen forever as a symbol of her life and her legacy."

The statue depicts Diana during the later years of her life, a period the brothers will remember well. William was 15 and Harry was 12 when their mother died in a car crash in August 1997.

Those later years were also some of the most turbulent in the breakdown of Diana's marriage to Prince Charles.

A Kensington Palace spokesperson said: "The statue aims to reflect the warmth, elegance and energy of Diana, Princess of Wales, in addition to her work and the impact she had on so many people.

Prince William and Harry Unveil Diana Statue
Prince Harry and Prince William chat during the unveiling of a statue of their mother Diana at the Sunken Garden in Kensington Palace on July 1. The event took place on what would have been their mother's 60th birthday. Dominic Lipinski / POOL / AFP/Getty Images

"The figure of Diana, Princess of Wales is surrounded by three children who represent the universality and generational impact of the princess' work.

"The portrait and style of dress was based on the final period of her life as she gained confidence in her role as an ambassador for humanitarian causes and aims to convey her character and compassion."

One of her best remembered humanitarian activities was her walk through a live landmine field in Angola in 1997—just months before her death.

By then she was already out of the royal family, having divorced Prince Charles in 1996.

She gave her tell-all interview about her husband's affair in 1995, while he admitted infidelity in a TV sit down in 1994.

The Prince of Wales was not at the event, but Diana's brother Charles Spencer and sisters Sarah McCorquodale and Jane Fellowes did attend.

William and Harry kissed their aunts and shook their uncle's hand as they made their way into the Sunken Garden and around the pond at its centre to the statue.

The monument was designed by sculptor Ian Rank-Broadley and was originally commissioned in 2017, ahead of the 20th anniversary of Diana's death.

The Sunken Garden was also redesigned by landscape architect Pip Morrison, with 4,000 new flowers to mark Diana's 60th birthday.

In their statement, William and Harry said: "Thank you to Ian Rank-Broadley, Pip Morrison and their teams for their outstanding work, to the friends and donors who helped make this happen, and to all those around the world who keep our mother's memory alive."

Rank-Broadley said: "Diana, Princess of Wales was an icon who touched the lives of people right around the world, so it has been a privilege to work alongside Prince William and Prince Harry on this statue which commemorates her life.

"We wanted to capture her warmth and humanity while showcasing the impact she had across generations. I hope that people will enjoy visiting the statue and the Sunken Garden, and taking a moment to remember The Princess."

In Focus

Princes Harry and William Unveil Diana Statue

Prince William and Prince Harry unveil a statue of their mother Diana at the Sunken Garden in Kensington Palace on July 1, to mark what would have been her 60th birthday.
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