The 20-year anniversary of the death of Princess Diana has been in the news for most of 2017. There has been an increasing amount of memorials, television documentaries, and exclusive interviews with everyone who worked with or personally knew Diana unleashed before the actual August 31 date.
Even her sons, the normally media-shy Prince William and Prince Harry, have opened up and spoken about their mother. They have talked about what she meant to them, how she influenced them now, and even spoke of their last conversation with her. William even surmised how she would have been as a grandmother.
Even Kate Middleton has seemed to channel Princess Di, by wearing Diana’s favorite tiara, and always wearing the infamous sapphire and diamond engagement ring.
Yet, where is Sarah Ferguson, the Duchess of York? For years, Fergie, as she is best known, Diana’s childhood friend, was the most outspoken member of the royal family when it came to anything Diana related.
Yet, although Fergie had plenty to say about Diana after her death, and then 10 years ago, during that anniversary. In 2011, the Duchess of York was on Oprah, lamenting that she had not been invited to William and Catherine’s wedding and spoke about Diana again.
Yet, she is saying nothing now. Why is she so silent? Certainly, Fergie has something to say about her sister-in-law, close friend, and cousin?
Princess Diana was highly instrumental in changing Fergie’s life, as she played matchmaker and set up Fergie with her favorite brother-in-law, Prince Andrew. It appears that even then, in the midst of the Charles and Camilla affair, Diana still believed in love.
Both girls were not only fourth cousins with mothers that were best friends. But, these very same mothers were also “bolters,” the royal term for women who run off on their family with other men. Sarah’s mother ran off with an Argentinian polo player, and Diana’s with an Australian wallpaper heir. The two young women had a lot in common and found comfort in their friendship.
In 1985, Princess Diana reintroduced fun-loving Fergie to Prince Andrew and invited her to Royal Ascot. Sarah Ferguson, the daughter of Major Ronald Ferguson, was Prince Charles’ polo manager, so she had been around Prince Andrew most of her life.
Fergie’s jolly personality was a breath of fresh air in the stuffy royal circles. Previously, Andrew had a string of inappropriate girlfriends, such as American porn star Koo Stark. Fergie was someone with enough pedigree that he could introduce to his royal mom and dad without making them blush.
Many speculate that perhaps Diana may have felt isolated in her role as wife of the heir to the British throne, as well as the then, publicly unknown, continued relationship between Prince Charles and Camilla Parker Bowles. Fergie gave her the camaraderie and support she needed living such a restricted royal life.
Yet, a year after Fergie and Andrew’s Westminster Abbey wedding, Fergie was the one that was getting all of the attention, with, according to the Daily Mail, even Charles reportedly saying to Diana, “Why can’t you be all jolly like Fergie?”
Within the next decade, both women found themselves divorced from the royal brothers. Diana began to live her life as she wished, while the recently divorced Fergie penned a memoir, My Story: Sarah the Duchess of York, that according to Vanity Fair, had a line that infuriated Diana.
Famed writer and editor Tina Brown explained that “She wrote that when she had worn a pair of Diana’s shoes she caught a verruca—plantar wart—from them.” This was quite insulting to Diana, who was not afraid to walk away from those who did not support her.
Fergie was in what was described as “Siberia,” and unlike Elton John, who Diana had also feuded with, the women never reunited before Diana’s untimely death.
In 2007, Fergie spoke with Bazaar about her long relationship with Diana and explained that they were cousins, but were like sisters, and sisters will fight. She understood Diana’s temper, and she revealed that she repeatedly tried to settle things.
“Diana was one of the quickest wits I knew; nobody made me laugh like her. But because we were like siblings — actually, we were fourth cousins and our mothers, who went to school together, were also best friends — we rowed. And the saddest thing, at the end, we hadn’t spoken for a year, though I never knew the reason, except that once Diana got something in her head…. I tried, wrote letters, thinking whatever happened didn’t matter, let’s sort it out. And I knew she’d come back. In fact, the day before she died she rang a friend of mine and said, ‘Where’s that Red? I want to talk to her.'”
Fergie made it clear that this has been hard for her, as she expressed her love for her friend.
“I really miss Diana. I loved her so much.”
Then, the biggest humiliation occurred. Fergie was not invited to the wedding of Prince William to Kate Middleton. Fergie explained on Oprah that she felt “ostracized” and “totally worthless.”
Yet, as of late, Fergie’s fortunes have seemed to turn in her favor. She recently went up to Balmoral, Scotland, to hobnob it with her ex-husband Andrew, daughter Eugenie, Kate, William and even the Queen.
Royal insiders surmise she is being silent on Diana because she has made her way back into the hearts of the royal family. She is not interested in making any waves.
Yet, more than likely, Sarah Ferguson, the Duchess of York, does not have anything more to say. She has always been the most vocal member of the royal family and has had more than one highly-publicized conversation about Diana. Perhaps now, she is letting those who have been silent for 20 years have their say?
What are your thoughts about Fergie keeping silent about Diana? Please share your thoughts and opinions below.
[Featured Image by Chris Jackson/Getty Images]