In their corner. Gayle King has stood by Prince Harry and Meghan Markle amid their many royal controversies over the years.
One year before the Duke and Duchess of Sussex decided to step back from their senior royal duties in January 2020, the CBS Mornings cohost was among many celebrity guests at Meghan’s New York City baby shower.
“[She’s] a really, really sweet person,” King shared on a February 2019 episode of CBS This Morning. “It was a very, very small private affair and just a very special time for her.” Meghan gave birth to the couple’s first child, son Archie, in May of that year, followed by their daughter, Lilibet, in June 2021.
In 2020, Harry and Meghan announced their decision to become financially independent from the royal family while splitting time between the U.S. and the U.K. “This geographic balance will enable us to raise our son with an appreciation for the royal tradition into which he was born, while also providing our family with the space to focus on the next chapter, including the launch of our new charitable entity,” read a statement from the pair at the time.
The couple later shed more light on the decision after they attempted to negotiate with his family behind closed doors. In March 2021, Harry said he was scared of “history repeating itself,” referring to his mother, Princess Diana, who died after a car chase with the paparazzi in 1997, following years of his wife being scrutinized in the British press.
Meghan also claimed during the joint CBS interview that during her pregnancy with Archie, there were “concerns and conversations” within the palace about “how dark his skin might be when he’s born.” Around that time, she also opened up to Harry about having suicidal thoughts.
“I realized that it was all happening just because I was breathing. I was really ashamed to say it at the time and ashamed to have to admit it to Harry, especially, because I know how much loss he’s suffered,” the Suits alum recalled. “But I knew that if I didn’t say it, that I would do it. I just didn’t want to be alive anymore. And that was a very clear and real and frightening constant thought.”
While the interview prompted both praise and backlash from fans, King supported the couple, stating on a March 2021 episode of CBS This Morning that “Meghan has documents to back up everything that she said.”
In addition to weighing in on the pair’s 2022 Netflix docuseries, Harry & Meghan, the former actress’ decision to skip King Charles III’s coronation and more, the journalist expressed her concerns about some of the reactions to the duo’s May 2023 car chase with the paparazzi in NYC.
“I think it was a very unfortunate incident,” King told Page Six at the time. “It’s troubling to me that anybody would try to downplay what that would mean to them. That’s very troubling to me.”
According to a statement from the Sussexes’ team, Harry, Meghan and her mother, Doria Ragland, were chased by paparazzi for two hours on their way home from the 2023 Women of Vision Awards. The NYPD later confirmed that no collisions or injuries occurred. Buckingham Palace, meanwhile, told Us Weekly at the time that they were declining to comment on the matter.
Sign up for Us Weekly’s free, daily newsletter and never miss breaking news or exclusive stories about your favorite celebrities, TV shows and more!
Scroll down to see all the times King defended Harry and Meghan: