Skip to main contentSkip to footer

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle pay heartfelt tribute to friend Archbishop Desmond Tutu who ‘held son Archie’

He passed away at the age of 90

prince harry desmond tutu
Hannah Hargrave
US Deputy Editor
Share this:

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have paid tribute to Archbishop Desmond Tutu who has sadly died.

The couple gave a statement and said: "Archbishop Tutu will be remembered for his optimism, his moral clarity, and his joyful spirit. He was an icon for racial justice and beloved across the world.

DISCOVER: 8 unusual Christmas gifts the royals have given each other

"It was only two years ago that he held our son, Archie, while we were in South Africa – 'Arch and The Arch' he had joked, his infectious laughter ringing through the room, relaxing anyone in his presence. He remained a friend and will be sorely missed by all."

WATCH: Inside Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's Montecito home

Archbishop Tutu, who won the Nobel Peace prize in 1984 for his part in helping to end the apartheid system in South Africa, died on Boxing Day.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex met the Archbishop back in 2019, during their royal tour of South Africa. It was one of the first times royal fans saw their son Archie, who enjoyed having tea with his parents and Desmond Tutu.

MORE: Meghan Markle's modest $4,302/month converted garage with mother Doria – details

SEE: Meghan Markle's brown wool coat looks just like this ASOS dupe - and it's a royal bargain

The Queen released the following statement: "I am joined by the whole Royal Family in being deeply saddened by the news of the death of Archbishop Desmond Tutu, a man who tirelessly championed human rights in South Africa and across the world.

meghan desmond tutu© Photo: Getty Images

Meghan and Harry met Desmond when Archie was a baby 

"I remember with fondness my meetings with him and his great warmth and humour. Archbishop Tutu’s loss will be felt by the people of South Africa, and by so many people in Great Britain, Northern Ireland and across the Commonwealth, where he was held in such high affection and esteem."

View post on Instagram

Harry and Meghan released a statement 

A statement on behalf of Desmond's family from Dr. Ramphela Mamphele, acting chairperson of the Archbishop Desmond Tutu IP Trust, read: "Ultimately, at the age of 90, he died peacefully at the Oasis Frail Care Centre in Cape Town this morning," reports Sky News.

Make sure you never miss a ROYAL story! Sign up to our newsletter to get all of our celebrity, royal and lifestyle news delivered directly to your inbox.

More Royalty

See more