Meghan Markle and Prince Harry sent a series of increasingly desperate messages to her father, Thomas, ahead of their royal wedding in 2018—but received no reply, barring one missed call at 4:57 a.m. on the day of the wedding.
Meghan’s legal team has submitted a series of texts from their phones to the High Court as part of their response in her claim against the Mail on Sunday for publishing what Meghan says was a copyright-protected letter to her father.
The submission includes a series of private texts Harry sent to Thomas Markle in the days before the wedding. Harry can be seen begging Thomas to make contact with him after Thomas was exposed by a story in the Mail on Sunday for collaborating with a photographer to stage fake candid photos.
The couple have said that their decision to cut off all contact with four major U.K. tabloids Sunday night was because Meghan’s privacy case against the Mail on Sunday will take a new step in High Court this week.
The first of the newly published messages, which were first posted on the Twitter feed of ITV royal correspondent Chris Ship, read: “Tom, it’s Harry and I’m going to call you right now. Please pick up, thank you.”
This is followed by another, reading: “Tom, Harry again! Really need to speak to u. U do not need to apologize, we understand the circumstances but ‘going public’ will only make the situation worse. If you love Meg and want to make it right please call me as there are two other options which don’t involve u having to speak to the media, who incidentally created this whole situation. So please call me so I can explain. Meg and I are not angry, we just need to speak to u. Thanks”
A third message appears to be a warning, which said: “Oh any speaking to the press WILL backfire, trust me Tom. Only we can help u, as we have been trying from day 1.”
A text sent four days before the wedding reads: “I’ve been reaching out to you all weekend but you're not taking any of our calls or replying to any texts. Very concerned about your health and safety and have taken every measure to protect you but not sure what more we can do if you don’t respond … Do you need help? Can we send security team down again? I’m very sorry to hear you’re in hospital but need you to please get in touch with us….What hospital are you at?”
It is understood that this message was sent after Thomas Markle gave a statement to TMZ stating he had had a heart attack—without telling Harry and Meghan first. Indeed, Meghan says she learned about her father’s hospitalization from the TMZ report.
A report in the Guardian adds that after Thomas allegedly refused the offer of security guards to protect him from press intrusion, the court documents say Meghan messaged him again: “Harry and I made a decision earlier today and are dispatching the same security guys you turned away this weekend to be a presence on the ground to make sure you’re safe … they will be there at your disposal as soon as you need them. Please please call as soon as you can... all of this is incredibly concerning but your health is most important.”
The documents state that Meghan was not able to talk to her father in the days before her wedding, although she did receive a missed call from him in the early hours of the morning of her wedding.
The documents also confirm that Meghan and Harry have not spoken to Thomas Markle since the wedding.
In a letter made public last night, Harry and Meghan said there would be “zero engagement” with four U.K. tabloids. Harry’s hatred of the press stems from his belief the media effectively killed his mother.
In one of the bluntest interviews he has ever given, in a BBC documentary about Diana, Harry said: “I think one of the hardest things to come to terms with is the fact that the people that chased [Diana] into the tunnel were the same people that were taking photographs of her while she was still dying on the backseat of the car.
“William and I know that. We’ve been told that numerous times by people that know that was the case. She’d had quite a severe head injury but she was very much still alive on the back seat, and those people that caused the accident … instead of helping, were taking photographs of her dying on the back seat and then those photographs made their way back to news desks in this country.”