The Duchess of Cambridge's uncle Gary Goldsmith has spoken for the time about his late father's neurological disorder.
Gary, whose sister is Carole Middleton, revealed that Kate's grandfather Ronald Goldsmith spent eight years struggling with the degenerative disease Multiple System Atrophy before passing aged 72 in 2003.
The 49-year-old, who said his father would have been "thrilled" to see Kate Middleton marry Prince William, has spoken about his plans to set up a charitable trust that raises money for MSA sufferers.
The Duchess of Cambridge, née Kate Middleton
"Dad was always so entertaining and full of life," he said. "But MSA robbed him both physically and emotionally. It was heartbreaking to watch."
Retired IT recruiter Gary went on to describe his shock when his mother Dorothy broke the sad news of his father's death.
"Mum rang me to say Dad had been in hospital. He was cleaning gutters for a lady in his village when he fell off a ladder and broke his heels. There was nobody in the house so he had to crawl inside to phone an ambulance.
"He gradually deteriorated and ended up in a wheelchair," he added. "Even though he had been ill for eight years it was a huge shock when he died. Sadly he was very poorly by the time Kate began dating William and he never lived to see the royal wedding. But he would have been thrilled."
Kate's uncle Gary Goldsmith
Gary is now dedicating his time to set up a charity for MSA sufferers and is currently raising money as part of a cycling team.
He is part of an eight-person group taking part in the 3 Cities Cycle — a 360-mile race from London to Amsterdam and Brussels.