Police in New York said today that conservationist Mark Shand, the brother of Prince Charles's wife, Camilla, was killed after he slipped and fell while trying to make his way back through the revolving doors of the Gramercy Park Hotel after nipping out for a cigarette shortly before 3 a.m.
Meanwhile, courtiers told the Royalist that while Charles and Camilla's trip to Canada on May 18 had not been canceled, and while the tour remained important to the couple, it was too early to say definitively if it would go ahead exactly as planned.
"Everything's still being worked out," said an aide.
Camilla is understood to be with Prince Charles in Scotland on the Balmoral estate.
Lt. John Grimpel of the New York City Police Department told BNOnews that the accident happened on early Wednesday morning after Shand, accompanied by an unidentified woman, entered the luxury Gramercy Park Hotel in Manhattan at 12:57 a.m. local time and sat at a booth in the Rose Bar.
He later went outside to smoke a cigarette at approximately 2:40 a.m., said Lt. John Grimpel of the New York City Police Department.
“At approximately 0240 hours, Mark Shand attempted to re-enter the hotel through the revolving doors,” Grimpel told BNO. “Mark Shand unexpectedly fell backwards, striking his head on the pavement. The incident was also captured on the hotel’s video surveillance system.”
Grimpel said 911 was called at about 2:50 a.m. and Shand was rushed to Bellevue Hospital, where he was pronounced dead by doctor Spiros Franjof at 11:25 a.m.
The New York Post quoted a source saying, “He had been taking blood pressure medication and had experienced some dizzy spells.”
Shand earlier on Tuesday night had attended an auction at Sotheby’s which raised $1.6 million for charity. Guests included Alexander Gilkes, Diane von Furstenberg, and Princess Eugenie, who is now living and working in New York.
Early this morning William and Kate released a statement which said: “The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge were saddened to learn this morning of the tragic death of Mark Shand. Their thoughts are with The Duchess of Cornwall and her family at this time.”