It is hardly an exaggeration to say that Meghan Markle’s father, Thomas Markle, has had a tumultuous influence on this year’s Royal Wedding. Over the past few weeks, Thomas publicly waffled on whether or not he was going to attend the wedding, was exposed for staging paparazzi photos, and was eventually hospitalized for heart surgery, making his presence at the wedding...precarious, to say the least.
In the end, Thomas was unable to attend his daughter’s wedding. But he still made sure to make his opinion on the event known to the world — and fans of Meghan and Harry will be happy (and probably a little relieved) to know that his thoughts are similar to those of any other father watching their daughter get married.
“My baby looks beautiful and she looks very happy,” Thomas, who is recovering from heart surgery in California, told TMZ. “I wish I were there and I wish them all my love and happiness.”
He added that watching the televised ceremony was “emotional and joyful.”
Thomas and Meghan’s mother, Doria Radlan, divorced in 1988 when Meghan was six. Since then, Meghan has stayed close with her mother, but slightly less so with her father. When she and Harry got engaged, Thomas hadn’t yet met him.
All the same, Meghan said that she had “always cared for [her] father” in a statement provided by Kensington Palace when it was revealed that Thomas would not be attending the Royal Wedding after all.
Either way, in the end, the wedding went off without a hitch even with Thomas’ absence. In fact, Thomas’ absence left room for a striking (if unintentional) feminist statement from Meghan, who ended up walking down most of the aisle herself before being handed off to Prince Harry by his father, Prince Charles. Perhaps this is just another way of showing that Meghan will be a royal unlike any other.