Princess Diana’s brother Charles opens up about her death: ‘I wish I could have protected her’

One of Princess Diana’s biggest fans to date is her brother Charles, 9th Earl Spencer. 20 years after her tragic death, Charles continues to advocate for his beloved older sister, publicly discussing her legacy. In an interview featured in the two-part ABC television event, The Story of Diana, the 53-year-old nobleman reveals that he has been plagued with thoughts that he could have done something to save his sister from her untimely passing.

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Charles Spencer opened up about Princess Diana's death Photo: Getty Images

“I was furious, I wasn’t just angry,” Charles says in the televised special, which is also produced by PEOPLE. “[I thought] what could I have done. But you always think, God, I wish I could’ve protected her. It was just…it was devastating. I always felt…intensely protective towards her.” Diana’s little brother adds that he’s able to see the silver-lining now, years after her death, through her sons William and Harry.

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Charles spoke very highly of his royal nephews, saying: “I love seeing the sort of uncomplicated way that they deal with people, and put them at their ease. It’s so easy to connect the dots between them and their mother.” He also mentions that he deeply appreciates how Diana’s sons and Kate Middleton are keeping his sister’s memory alive through their impressive actions.

Princess Diana's legacy lives on in TheStory of Diana special Photo: Getty Images

“What’s amazing to me is the passing of time,” the earl says. “Now William and Catherine are nearly the same age as Diana when she died. I love the fact that there’s still such veneration inside her immediate family for what she was, and what she meant. I think that’s fantastic.”

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Charles reveals that he was inspired to open up about Diana because he wanted to help cement her rightful place in history. “One of the reasons I wanted to talk now is because I think after 20 years, someone shifts from being a contemporary person to a person of history actually. And Diana deserves a place in history.” He says: “I think that it’s important for people who are under 35, who probably won’t remember her at all, to remember that this is a special person - not just a beautiful one.”

Charles said Diana would have been 'the best grandmother ever" Photo: Getty Images

One of the most heartbreaking aspects of Diana’s early death for Charles is the fact that she’ll never get to meet her grandchildren, Prince George and Princess Charlotte. “One of the great tragedies is that Diana would have been the best grandmother ever,” he says in the interview. The Story of Diana airs in two part on ABC on August 9 and 10 at 9 p.m. E.T.

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