On Tuesday, Prince William and Kate Middleton paid tribute to the fortitude of heartbroken loved ones of the 22 tragic victims of 2017’s Manchester Arena terror attack. In honour of those killed in the attack, the Glade of Light Memorial was commissioned to act as a place of hope and solace for the families. During his “incredibly moving” memorial speech, William made reference to his own grief for his late mother, Diana, Princess of Wales, who died in 1997.
Speaking on The Today Show, presenter Karl Stefanovic said: “The Duke and Duchess have attended a memorial for the attack on the arena up there. “In his speech, William made reference to his own mother”.
Speaking, via video link, on the show, The Daily Mirror’s royal editor Russell Myers said: “[An] incredibly moving occasion today to pay tribute to the 22 people who were murdered on May 22, 2017 by a bomber who walked into the Manchester Arena and detonated a rucksack bomb while children were watching the Ariana Grande concert.
“Absolute horrific bloodshed.
Mr Myers noted that the youngest victim of the terror attack was just eight-years-old. The royal editor added: “Prince William and the Duchess of Cambridge were invited to be present at the memorial that just opened in tribute to those people. “As you saw there, referencing his own grief and speaking very candidly to the people that had gathered.
“It was incredibly moving to meet those families and I just think Prince William did them proud today”. Mr Myers added: “[I] was speaking to some of the families and they were particularly accepting of him [Prince William] being there. “They wanted for him to be able to celebrate the lives that have been lost”.
In his speech, William said, “As someone who lives with his own grief, I also know that what often matters most to the bereaved is that those we have lost are not forgotten. “There is comfort in remembering. “In acknowledging that, while taken horribly soon, they lived. “They changed our lives. “They were loved, and they are loved. It is why memorials such as the Glade of Light are so important. Why Catherine and I so wanted to be amongst you today.”
Alongside the grieving families, William and Kate gathered at the site in the shadows of Manchester Cathedral to officially unveil the memorial. The Duke said: “A memorial is a physical statement that the memory of those who died lives on”. In the horrendous terror attack, hundreds of people were injured alongside the 22 who died.