Princess Diana Francis Spencer of Wales (1961-1997)

August 31st, 1997  92nd Street Y…New York City

I was coming from a yoga class with my Israeli boyfriend, entering the member’s lounge, finding everyone huddled around the TV.

                              A SPECIAL REPORT

Britain’s Princess Diana has died at the Pitie Salpetriere Hospital in Paris, after confirmation from Buckingham Palace at 5:20 a.m.. The Princess of Wales died as a result of injuries sustained during a fatal car crash.

Women began crying while men shook their heads. I remember falling into a chair, as shocked as anyone.

I too was a Diana fan.

My boyfriend sneered in the most remarkable manner before saying, “Who cares about some spoiled Princess. People die from bombs and murder in my country, every day. “

To say I was further shocked at his lack of compassion would have been an understatement, but still managed to shower, dress and join him for brunch.

“Why are you so sullen?” he had asked, in his rough, stilted accent. “I take you to this nice place, yet you’re not happy.”

I may have been afraid to address what I knew was the truth, that he was too cold for me, parting not long after.

Diana was a very special person, and I’ll tell you why.

Unlike my chilly friend, she cared, especially for the sick and shunned, the helpless and misunderstood.

She rebelled against the coldness of the family she married into, not realizing, rather than for love, she was chosen as a sacrificial lamb.

She spoke openly about her bulimia, depression, betrayal by her husband, and her own affairs while married, searching for the love Charles denied her, still involved with the woman he’s married to today.

At 19, marrying a man she loved who didn’t love her, though wounding her deeply, opened her heart to others in an unprecedented way.

Tony Blair, England’s Prime Minister at the time, aptly named her…

The People’s Princess. images-3.jpeg

She held the hands of AIDS patients, without fear. She walked across landmines in Angola to bring awareness.

She ladled soup at homeless shelters, taking along herimages-3 12.44.50 PM.jpeg two little boys so they’d learn, everyone wasn’t as lucky as they were, bringing their humanity to the forefront of the men they’ve become.images-1.jpeg

Conspiracy theories linger, saying THE FIRM, what’s referred to as the machine ruling the Royals, had her killed, afraid she’d marry Dodi Fayed, a Muslim, she’d been dating.

No one really knows why this beautiful, caring creature died so young, leaving two young sons to weep for her.

But her legacy lives on.

Help where and when you can, and don’t be ashamed of who you are.

Diana died 23 years ago today.

She was 36.      Unknown.jpeg


About Susannah Bianchi

I'm just a girl who likes to write slightly on slant. I've had a career in fashion, dabbled in film and to be honest, I don't like talking about myself. Now my posts are another matter so I will let them speak for themselves. My eBooks, A New York Diary, Model Behavior: Friends For Life and Notes From A Working Cat can be found on Thanks.
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34 Responses to Princess Diana Francis Spencer of Wales (1961-1997)

  1. I was sitting on the organ bench when I heard about Diana. The first part of the service had gone well, and it was time for prayer after the sermon. Pastor prayed for her, and I hadn’t heard the news! What a shock!

    Thanks for writing about her today.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. skinnyuz2b says:

    I remember the morning when I heard of her tragic passing. So many of us were truly shocked, followed by a great sadness. Princess Diana was a generous and caring spirit. She may have been England’s princess, but America loved her.
    When remembering Diana I automatically think of our prince, JFK Jr, who died two years later. The two are intertwined for me.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I think anyone with a heart remembers her. The outpouring from all of Britain alone was amazing. Making the Queen have to show more compassion that alas, she clearly didn’t feel towards her former daughter-in-law. Doesn’t matter now, but when you think, if Charles could have just married Camila then and not be forced to marry someone who looked finer on paper, Diana would probably still be here…but it was not meant to be. sigh

      Liked by 1 person

      • skinnyuz2b says:

        The poor thing had no idea what she was getting into. A young girl needs love. And Charles was denied his happiness by the need for royal appearances too.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I’ve tried to hate Charles less after reading a couple of books about him. Penny Junor wrote a great one, on how he too was harmed by the coldness of his parents. That he was a very sensitive kid, and the father, who I gather was afraid he’d be gay, practically beat it out of him by sending him to a terrible school, never coming to visit. You see why Camilla became so important, because she was really the first who ever listened and loved him, outright, unconditionally. Diana was such a casualty from day one. So sad.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Dale says:

    I was going to say this was one of those “where were you” moments. We were at our friends’ cottage. We were sitting outside, in front of a large bonfire, enjoying the beautiful summer night (actually, it was like 3-4 in the morning). We had the radio on for music and the news came in about the accident. We were so shocked and stayed up, listening to each report, with hope for her. As we know, we hoped in vain. She was the people’s princess for sure and will forever be linked to the year we lost our son.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Lovely tribute, Susannah.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. aFrankAngle says:

    i recall the stunned feeling I had when I awakened to the news that day. My wife was shocked. Yet – whenever I see her boys – especially Harry – I think about how proud Diana would be of them for caring on her spirit of giving. …. Hi Susannah. Hope all is well … Keep smiling!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Sorryless says:

    In a four year window, with each tragic event separated by two years, we lost royalty, then Camelot and finally, the feeling of being safe. First Diana, then JFK Jr and finally, September 11th.

    As for Lady Di, it was impossible to believe then and it’s still pretty damn impossible to believe twenty three years later. It will never make sense.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. This was a wonderful piece of writing, Susannah, and a touching tribute. I did not know know much about her back then, a teenage guy not caring much for princesses, I guess, but she was quite an amazing person. The world is poorer for her loss.

    Liked by 1 person

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