Meghan Markle might need to find someone else to walk her down the aisle.
Earlier this month, Kensington Palace announced that both of her parents would, in fact, be in attendance at the royal wedding on Saturday, with her father Thomas Markle giving her away at St. George's Chapel in Windsor. But based on some recent developments, it seems Thomas may not be at the wedding at all.
According to TMZ, Thomas is sitting out Saturday’s festivities entirely, and won’t even travel to London to meet his daughter’s future family. The news comes after Thomas was outed for staging paparazzi photos of himself preparing for the royal wedding. In the series of photographs—which Thomas allegedly sold to an agency—he was seen reading a picture book on London, looking through pictures of Meghan and Harry on the Internet, working out, and even being fitted for a suit.
TMZ reports that Thomas wanted to reclaim his image as a “recluse” and a “lush,” hoping that the staged photos would help the public to see him in a better light. Meghan’s dad alleges that the paparazzi agency approached him and offered money for the photographs, though he says he received nowhere near $100,000 for the stunt. According to the report, Thomas “deeply regrets” the photos, which make him look “stupid and hammy.”
Wait, there’s more: Meghan’s dad also reportedly told TMZ that he suffered a heart attack just six days ago, and checked himself out of the hospital so he could attend the wedding. Now, out of embarrassment, he’s personally decided not to attend.
Kensington Palace issued the following statement regarding the news to People: “This is a deeply personal moment for Ms. Markle in the days before her wedding. She and Prince Harry ask again for understanding and respect to be extended to Mr. Markle in this difficult situation.”