On September 6, 1997, Princess Diana’s globally-watched funeral went beyond typical celebrity fare, highlighting the world’s mourning for a beloved mother, friend, and humanitarian. Her untimely death at 36, amidst royal turmoil, left a deep impact, felt by her sons and the world. The grand funeral, filled with solemnity and grief, poignantly revealed the collective sorrow for the “People’s Princess.”

Prince Harry Hated Walking Behind His Mother’s Casket

One enduring image from Princess Diana’s funeral is of her grief-stricken sons, 15-year-old William and 12-year-old Harry, courageously walking behind the carriage carrying their mother’s casket. Accompanied by their father Prince Charles, grandfather Prince Philip, and uncle Earl Spencer, the young princes undertook the challenging journey from St. James’s Palace to Westminster Abbey, the venue for the funeral.

Participating in the procession proved immensely difficult for the boys. Reflecting on the experience later, Harry expressed the emotional weight of walking a long distance behind his mother’s coffin, observed by thousands in person and millions on television. He emphasized that no child should be asked to endure such a situation, a sentiment he doubted would be accepted in today’s context. William, too, initially hesitated to join the procession, agreeing only when assured by Prince Philip that he would be by his side.