Meghan Markle has shared an emotional statement where she revealed she and the animal rescue charity Mayhew would be opening a new wing in dedication of her late friend, Oli Juste.
Although the Duchess of Sussex stopped being a patron of the charity at the start of 2022, they have still joined forces for the moving moment. In the statement, Meghan recounted how her friend, who was an animal behaviourist, had introduced her to the charity, and helped look after her dog, Guy, after he fell ill when she first came to the United Kingdom.
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"It was nearly four years ago, as I was exploring possible organizations to volunteer with, that Oli brought me to Mayhew," she explained.
She went on to say how Oli had chosen the charity for her, knowing that she would be "drawn to their deep love of community".
Meghan sadly revealed that Oli "suddenly" passed away on 15 January 2022, and as a result she and Mayhew would be opening the Oli Juste wing at the charity, which will help shelter animals that are struggling to find a new "forever home".
"Because much like Oli, they will never be forgotten, and they will always be loved," she concluded.
The new wing will be for animals struggling to find their "forever home"
The statement also revealed that the Duchess was no longer involved with the charity as a patron, but that it still enjoyed her "unwavering support".
The charity also confirmed this in a small message, that read: "Our Royal Patronage with The Duchess of Sussex came to an end at the beginning of the year.
"It's been an incredible privilege for Mayhew to have worked closely with Meghan, The Duchess of Sussex, since 2019 when she became our Patron."
The Duchess is no longer a patron of the animal rescue charity
Although Meghan and her husband, Prince Harry, were unable to attend the Duke of Edinburgh's service of thanksgiving, Meghan did send a special gift to the event.
The Duchess sent an eye-catching, colourful wreath that stood out amongst the stunning white wreaths from the royal family, which were pictured lying against the pews inside St George's Chapel.
The wreath, which was accompanied by a handwritten note from the Duchess, was made up of a variety of bright purple and blue locally sourced flowers – each of which had been thoughtfully selected.
Created by one of their favourite florists, Willow Crossley, the royal couple specifically asked for the wreath to include acanthus mollis (bear's breeches), the national flower of Greece to represent Prince Philip's heritage, and eryngium (sea holly) to represent the Royal Marines.
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