Prince Harry’s love for Queen Elizabeth was ‘palpable,’ Hoda Kotb says

LONDON — “Today” show co-host Hoda Kotb told Page Six Prince Harry’s love of his grandmother was “palpable” when she interviewed him just months before Queen Elizabeth’s death.

The prince, now 38, spoke openly about the Queen during an interview with Kotb, 58, back in April, as he insisted he wanted to ensure his grandmother’s protection.

“I’m just making sure that she’s, you know, protected and got the right people around her,” he said.

On Monday morning, just minutes before she went live on air to helm NBC’s coverage of the Queen’s state funeral at Westminster Abbey with co-anchor Savannah Guthrie, Kotb told Page Six that Harry’s love was “was palpable when we spoke about the Queen … it was the most moving parts of the interview — and to imagine the next time time that we would be talking about Harry and his grandmother was today is so poignant.

Prince Harry (center), along with his brother Prince William (left) and cousin Peter Phillips (right), followed Queen Elizabeth's coffin into Westminster Abbey on Monday.
Prince Harry (center), along with his brother Prince William (left) and cousin Peter Phillips (right), followed Queen Elizabeth’s coffin into Westminster Abbey on Monday.
AFP via Getty Images
The prince arrived to the funeral procession with wife Meghan Markle.
The prince arrived to the funeral procession with wife Meghan Markle.
Getty Images

“A big chunk of the interview was about the Queen, which shows you where she was in his mind.”

She added: “He showed me another side of her, that mischievous side. He delighted in that. I was looking at old videos of them and he would always whisper something in her ear and she would always burst out laughing.

A young Harry (left) and William (right) with Queen Elizabeth, who they called "Granny."
A young Harry (left) and William (right) with Queen Elizabeth, who they called “Granny.”
Tim Graham Photo Library via Get
Prince Harry told Hoda Kotb on "Today" that he and Queen Elizabeth talked "about things she can't talk about with anyone else."
Prince Harry told Hoda Kotb on “Today” that he and Queen Elizabeth talked “about things she can’t talk about with anyone else.”
Tim Graham Photo Library via Get

“My heart goes out to all of the royals today. We are seeing it’s a big moment for this country but they lost their grandmother, and anyone who’s lost their grandmother and has lost a grandmother for that long knows what it feels like.”

The interview took place as Harry and wife Meghan Markle made a fleeting visit to the Queen at Windsor before flying to the Netherlands for the Invictus Games in April.

Prince Harry was not allowed to wear his military uniform during the procession.
Prince Harry was not allowed to wear his military uniform during the procession.
Getty Images
The prince, here with wife Meghan Markle (right) and sister-in-law Kate Middleton (left), showed emotion during a procession from Buckingham Palace to Westminster on Sept. 14.
The prince, here with wife Meghan Markle (right) and sister-in-law Kate Middleton (left), showed emotion during a procession from Buckingham Palace to Westminster on Sept. 14.
Getty Images

Asked about that visit with the woman he called “Granny,” Harry told Kotb: “It was great, it was really nice to see her. To see her in an element of privacy was nice.” The Duke of Sussex added the he had tea with her and even “made her laugh. We have a really special relationship. We talk about things she can’t talk about with anyone else.”

When Kotb asked him about his favorite thing about the Queen, he quickly said: “Her sense of humor, and her ability to see the humor in so many different things.”

The "Today" show aired from outside Westminster Abbey on Monday.
The “Today” show aired from outside Westminster Abbey on Monday.
NBC
“I’m just making sure that she’s, you know, protected and got the right people around her,” Prince Harry told Hoda Kotb during an April "Today" interview.
“I’m just making sure that she’s, you know, protected and got the right people around her,” Prince Harry told Hoda Kotb during an April “Today” interview.
Today

Guthrie, 50, told Page Six today: “We are all very very privileged and honored today to be here witnessing history. I am struck by the outpouring of emotion by the British public,  it transcends generation, it transcends everything.”

Having helmed “Today” from outside Buckingham Palace following the Queen’s death, Guthrie added, “I was struck at Buckingham Palace by the people laying flowers. It was so strangely quiet and respectful 

“They loved her — which is not a word that we’re familiar with using for any leader! But love is the word that people most often use.”

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