Princess Diana of Wales

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Princess Diana of Wales was born on July 1, 1961, in Sandringham, United Kingdom

Diana was born into a family of British nobility with royal ancestry as The Honorable Diana Spencer. She was the fourth child and third daughter of John Spencer, Viscount Althorp and the Honorable Frances Roche. She grew up in Park House, situated on the Sandringham estate, and was educated in England and Switzerland. In 1975, after her father inherited the title of Earl Spencer, she became Lady Diana Spencer.

Her wedding to the Prince of Wales on 29 July 1981, held at St Paul’s Cathedral, reached a global television audience of over 750 million people. While married, Diana bore the titles Princess of Wales, Duchess of Cornwall, Duchess of Rothesay, Countess of Chester, and Baroness of Renfrew. The marriage produced two sons, the princes William and Harry, who were then respectively second and third in the line of succession to the British throne. As Princess of Wales, Diana undertook royal duties on behalf of the Queen and represented her at functions overseas. She was celebrated for her charity work and for her support of the International Campaign to Ban Landmines. She was involved with dozens of charities including London’s Great Ormond Street Hospital for children, of which she was president from 1989.

Diana remained the object of worldwide media scrutiny during and after her marriage, which ended in divorce on 28 August 1996. Media attention and public mourning were extensive after her death in a car crash in Paris on 31 August 1997 and subsequent televised funeral.

Starting in the mid-to-late 1980s, the Princess of Wales became well known for her support of charity projects, and is credited with considerable influence for her campaigns against the use of landmines and helping the victims of AIDS. In April 1987, the Princess of Wales was the first high-profile celebrity to be photographed knowingly touching a person infected with the HIV virus. Her contribution to changing the public opinion of AIDS sufferers was summarized in December 2001 by Bill Clinton at the ‘Diana, Princess of Wales Lecture on AIDS’.

 

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