Royal Family

Prince William Shares Sad Message on Wife Kate Middleton’s Birthday — Here’s Why

The Prince of Wales shared a rare personal tweet on X in both English and Welsh

<p>Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty</p> Prince William and Kate Middleton view floral tributes left at the entrance to Sandringham House, the Norfolk estate of Queen Elizabeth, on September 15, 2022.

Prince William interrupted Kate Middleton’s birthday to issue an emotional message.

On Tuesday, the Prince of Wales, 41, posted a tribute to Welsh rugby legend JPR Williams, who died on Monday at age 74.

“There was no one quite like him on the rugby field. A true @WelshRugbyUnion great, my thoughts are with JPR Williams’ family and friends,” Prince William wrote in English and Welsh on X on Tuesday, which is his wife’s 42nd birthday. The royal signed the message as “W,” using his first initial to signify that the note came from him directly.

The Welsh Rugby Union honored Williams, who was best known by his initials, as “one of the greatest Welsh players of all time.” His death was announced on Monday by the Bridgend Ravens, a team he played for and served as club president of until his death. The Associated Press remembered “his fearlessness and swashbuckling attacking style” on the field in the 1970s, where he played for Wales and the British Lions at the international level during the “golden era” of Welsh rugby.

In a statement to the BBC on Monday, the Williams family said, “JPR died peacefully today at the University Hospital of Wales surrounded by his loving wife and four children, after a short illness, bravely battling bacterial meningitis. The family request privacy at this difficult time.”

Prince William often uses the official X (formerly Twitter) account he shares with Princess Kate to comment on breaking news in the British sports world, and he’s long been linked to the Welsh Rugby Union. King Charles’ elder son became Vice Royal Patron of the rugby union for one of his first public roles in 2007 and was promoted to patron in 2016, taking over the post previously held by Queen Elizabeth.

King Charles also used his first speech as sovereign to name William the Prince of Wales, the traditional title for the male heir to the throne, following Queen Elizabeth’s death in September 2022.

<p>Tim Clayton/Corbis via Getty</p> J. P. R. Williams at the he Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Championships at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club at Wimbledon on July 8, 2023.

Prince William has supported the squad in the stands many times since and brought his eldest son Prince George, 10, to the Wales vs. Argentina Rugby World Cup quarterfinals match in France in October 2023. The dad and son matched in navy suits with red ties, and William sweetly let George take the lead when greeting officials.

<p>Adam Pretty - World Rugby/World Rugby via Getty </p> Benoit Payan, Mayor of Marseille greets Prince George and William, Prince of Wales and Patron of the Welsh Rugby Union on Oct. 14, 2023.

While Princess Kate is spending her 42nd birthday privately, her plans probably include plenty of family time as Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis’ school break for the Christmas holiday comes to a close. Family time is also likely why Prince William and Princess Kate have yet to step out for a royal duty in 2024, as the hands-on parents are known to scale back their royal schedules when their children are off from school.

King Charles and Queen Camilla were among the first to wish Kate a happy birthday on Tuesday and released a never-before-seen photo from their May 6 coronation day.

Taken by royal photographer Chris Jackson, the picture shows Kate with King Charles in a behind-the-scenes look at the historic day. The image, which also shows Prince Edward and Sophie, the Duke and Duchess of Edinburgh, appears to have been taken at Buckingham Palace following the crowning ceremony at Westminster Abbey.

King Charles wears the Imperial State Crown, while Princess Kate sports a bespoke Jess Collett x Alexander McQueen headpiece with her Royal Victorian Order robe.

“Wishing The Princess of Wales a very happy birthday today!” the snap was captioned.

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