After much back and forth, Meghan Markle has confirmed that her father will not attend her wedding to Prince Harry. The bride-to-be released a statement—her first solo announcement issued by Kensington Palace—affirming that Thomas Markle's health will prevent him from traveling to London this weekend.
"Sadly, my father will not be attending our wedding. I have always cared for my father and hope he can be given the space he needs to focus on his health," she said. "I would like to thank everyone who has offered generous messages of support. Please know how much Harry and I look forward to sharing our special day with you on Saturday."
A statement from Ms. Meghan Markle: pic.twitter.com/TjBNarmuBU— Kensington Palace (@KensingtonRoyal) May 17, 2018
Earlier this week, the father of the bride revealed that he'd experienced a heart attack, but had checked himself out of the hospital (against medical advice) to prepare for his daughter's wedding. Following a paparazzi scandal—Thomas and his eldest daughter, Samantha, hired a photographer to shoot staged photos of him—he decided against attending. The following day, he revealed that he would like to walk Meghan down the aisle, pending his health. Unfortunately, Thomas' condition required emergent surgery to repair the cardiac damage. He allegedly underwent the procedure on Wednesday morning and is currently stable, People reports.
Meghan's statement comes just days after a Kensington Palace spokesman relayed the couple's request for "understanding and respect to be extended to Mr. Markle in this difficult situation." Though the past few days have marked "a deeply personal moment for [Meghan] in the days before her wedding," another People source revealed that she is "equally" as excited to marry Prince Harry. "She is with her mother and with her best friends, and is preparing for one of the most magical days of her life," the insider revealed.