Thomas Markle fell over while shopping days before suffering stroke

Thomas Markle fell over while out shopping days before he was hospitalised with a stroke, it is revealed – amid questions over whether Meghan will go to his bedside

  • Duchess of Sussex’s father Thomas Markle fell over while out shopping and had to be helped up to his feet
  • Incident happened just days before 77-year-old was taken to hospital after suffering suspected major stroke
  • Mr Markle was struck down only a week before he had been due to fly to London for Jubilee celebrations
  • It is not yet known whether Meghan will go to her father’s bedside at a US clinic in Chula Vista, California  

The Duchess of Sussex’s father Thomas Markle fell over while out shopping and had to be helped up to his feet  just days before he was taken to hospital after suffering a suspected major stroke, it was revealed today.

Retired lighting director Mr Markle, 77, who lives in Rosarito, Mexico, was struck down and lost his speech only a week before he had been due to fly to London for the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations.

It is not yet known whether Meghan, 40, who is estranged from him, will go to his bedside at a clinic in Chula Vista, California – only a few hours’ drive from the home she shares with Prince Harry in Montecito.

And royal author Tom Bower revealed on ITV’s Good Morning Britain today that he had spoken to Mr Markle over the weekend about his upcoming book about Meghan, and that he had fallen over – before the stroke happened. 

Mr Bower said: ‘He was alright, but he’d just fallen over in Rosarito, he’d been shopping and he told me that some other people had helped him stand up. But he is a man who’s already had heart problems and he wasn’t feeling too good. On the other hand, he was very excited about coming to London for the Jubilee.’

Mr Markle was taken by ambulance to the clinic in Chula Vista, but had earlier been admitted to hospital in Tijuana, Mexico, where he was seen arriving with an oxygen mask on his face and flanked by paramedics.

Thomas Markle had revealed to MailOnline’s Dan Wootton on GB News last month that he wanted to visit Britain for the Jubilee

It is not known whether Meghan, who is estranged from her father Thomas Markle (together), is planning to go to his bedside 

A video posted on US gossip website TMZ showed him on a stretcher with a pale face and one hand on his chest.

Mr Bower said he did not know whether Meghan would go and see her father, but added: ‘What we do know is that Meghan has always said that she’s a very compassionate person.

Harry and Meghan are FINALLY reunited with the Royal family…. in wax: Couple are added to line up with the Queen, William and Kate in upcoming display at Madame Tussauds 

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have been reunited at last with the Queen, Prince Charles, Camilla, Prince William and Kate Middleton – in wax. 

Figures of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex were separated from their family at Madame Tussauds in London in January 2020 after they decided to step back from their royal duties.

Now, to mark the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, the couple have temporarily been brought back into the fold.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have been reunited at last with the Queen, Prince Charles, Camilla, Prince William and Kate Middleton – in wax at Madame Tussauds in London

Their figures will remain next to the other royal waxworks until the end of the jubilee celebrations early next month. 

Harry and Meghan, as well as Prince Charles, Camilla and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, have also been given a makeover to mark the occasion. 

It comes after Harry and Meghan announced they would be coming to the UK to join in the celebrations next weekend.

‘And if compassion was at all necessary right now, it would mean that she would go to her father’s bedside, about two and a half hours’ drive south of where she lives, and give him some comfort and reassurance. And we wait to see what happens.’

Mr Bower also confirmed that Meghan has not made any contact with Mr Markle ‘since just before the wedding – other than the famous letter’.

He continued: ‘I’ve been in touch with him for my book, which comes out very soon now, for some time.

‘And he is very upset, he’s very unhappy because of course he was a very loving father to Meghan and supported her throughout her childhood when her mother wasn’t there. And paid for her student fees too.

‘He was very upset that he hasn’t been able to see his grandchildren. So I do think to an extent he was going to come to London, although he told me that he was coming to see the Queen, I think in reality he was also hoping to see Meghan and to see his grandchildren.

‘And we do know of course that if all Meghan Markle’s family had been here in London, it would have somewhat dominated the news outlets, not just the Jubilee itself. So to that extent I suppose we’ve been relieved of that saga.’

It comes after Mr Markle’s daughter Samantha, 57, told MailOnline: ‘My father is recovering in hospital. We ask for privacy for the family, for his health and wellbeing. He just needs peace and rest. Godspeed. We are praying. He just needs some rest.’

His blood pressure had been high in the preceding days, it was said. It means that Mr Markle will miss the celebrations in London just as he missed Meghan’s wedding to Harry in 2018 after suffering a heart attack.

Mr Markle, who lives in Rosarito, Mexico, was taken by ambulance across the border to the US at around 9.30pm on Monday.

His son Thomas Jr, 55, was with him and is at the hospital near San Diego, while Samantha was last night said to be flying in from her home in Florida.

In the footage posted online, Mr Markle is seen lying on a stretcher wearing an oxygen mask.

Two paramedics try to lift him while speaking in Spanish and ask him what his name is. Somebody behind the camera responds that his name is Thomas.

Speaking in English, one of the paramedics says: ‘I’m going to be your paramedic. You’re going to the US.’

Mr Markle was due in London next week and was to have been a guest on TV during coverage of the jubilee celebrations. The trip would have fulfilled his ‘long-held wish to visit Windsor Castle’, MailOnline’s Dan Wootton wrote.

His health, however, seems certain to have dashed that hope, just as it scuppered Mr Markle’s plans to walk Meghan down the aisle in 2018 when he was forced to pull out of the ceremony.

He underwent surgery to repair the damage and Prince Charles stood in for him, performing the father of the bride’s duties during the wedding service. 

A young Meghan Markle is pictured with her father Thomas Markle, a retired lighting director who lives in Mexico

Royal author Tom Bower revealed on ITV’s Good Morning Britain today that he had spoken to Mr Markle over the weekend

Mr Bower is interviewed by Richard Madeley and Susanna Reid while appearing on ITV’s Good Morning Britain today

Mr Markle has had a difficult relationship with Meghan and her husband Harry – whom he has accused of being ‘snotty’.

He and his youngest daughter have not spoken since before the wedding, when they were texting while he lay in bed at the hospital, he has claimed.

According to Mr Markle, at that point they ‘pretty much said goodbye’ and Harry told him: ‘If you had listened to me, this wouldn’t have happened to you.’

The Sussexes were said to have been angry at Mr Markle selling photos of himself to a paparazzi agency in the run-up to the wedding.

Last month he announced he was flying to the UK for the royal celebrations and said he wanted to meet Harry and Meghan, who will be attending, along with their son Archie, three, and 11-month-old daughter Lilibet.

Mr Markle said he also wanted to meet Prince Charles and joked that they had both been ‘ghosted by our own children’.

Meghan Markle and husband Prince Harry after his polo victory at the Santa Barbara Polo and Racquet Club on Sunday

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex at Westminster Abbey in London on March 9, 2020 – before stepping down as senior royals

Speaking to GB News from his home in Rosarito at the time, Mr Markle said: ‘I’m looking forward to it.

‘I’m going to show my respect for the Queen and I’m going to make sure that the Queen understands that my entire family respects the Queen and the royals.

‘We admire them and we want them to know that’s how we feel about them and that’s how we feel about England.’

He added that he felt he had a right to meet his grandchildren.

In her interview with Oprah Winfrey in March last year, Meghan talked about the betrayal she felt when it emerged that her father had been working with a photo agency.

She said: ‘We called my dad and I asked him [if he talked to the tabloids] and he said ‘No, absolutely not’ and I said, ‘You know the institution has never intervened for anything for us, but they can try to go in and kill this story, but if they do this once we’re not going to be able to use that same leverage to protect our own kids one day. I just need you to tell me and if you tell me the truth we can help.’ ‘

According to Meghan, her father ‘wasn’t able to do that’ and she said his refusal to answer was ‘so hard for me to reconcile’.

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