Twenty years ago I was still living in Punta Gorda, Florida. Jack was off flying and I was alone with Max and Shubi our dogs. As was usual, they got me up at 5 AM, and as was usual, living in a community with strict leash laws, I pulled on my jogging clothes (still running back then) and took the two of them for a short walk.
When I got back I turned on the Satellite TV and heard the terrible news. Princess Diana had been in a horrible car crash and at first they suspected she was badly injured and then they came back telling the audience that she was dead.
I was shocked. I remember sitting there, thinking that it had to be a mistake! Certainly young, beautiful, Diana, finally free of the Royal Family, was fine and not….
But as I watched BBC News, and I saw the News Broadcasters struggling to control their own anguish, I knew it was true. Beautiful Diana, Francis Spencer, Princess of Wales was gone.
I called my Aunt in Framfield, East Sussex England and spoke to her and her sisters. They were all shocked and saddened by her passing.
The funeral overwhelmed me, and so many people. I recall crying and feeling so saddened for her sons. How would they cope without her loving, ways?
Over the years I wondered about the Princess. I’d read the Book “Diana, Her True Story” back when it came out and at the time I remember thinking that the girl had been used. Like a lamb to slaughter. The Royals needed a virgin, to procreate and get an heir. Diana was chosen, at 19 years old for that. I was ashamed that anyone would do that.
The years passed again, and both Princes William and Harry grew up, William married the lovely Kate, and two children were born.
Then in the last two months the Princes released a loving portrait of their mother.
Recordings of Diana from Andrew Morton, her Biographer, and video tapes made with her voice coach Peter Settelen.
I watched and I listened to what Diana had to say, in her own voice. I watched her as she spoke. My heart broke for this lovely woman, who wanted only love in her life and never found it.
Yes, I loved Princess Diana all along. I tried to mimic every new hair style she had, and even attempted the make up. I loved all the charitable work she did. And I loved how she loved her children. They were her everything. Although her life was very sad, Diana always put on a brave face, tended to her duties and gave her all.
I wish her life had been longer. I wish she had found true joy in her life. Today, on the 20th anniversary of her passing, I pray that she is finally at peace and I thank her for all she did in her short life.