Since the beginning of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry’s royal romance, Markle’s family — in particular, her half-siblings — have been more than willing to give their two cents about their baby sister. Since the engagement of the couple in late 2017, the siblings have become that much more involved with the lead up to the royal wedding. Here is a look at the family’s drama leading up to the Royal wedding on May 19.
Meet the Family
Before we dive into this, let’s go over Meghan Markle’s family:
Doria Ragland is Meghan’s mother. Doria and Meghan’s father, Thomas, divorced when Meghan was six-years-old. Doria has met Prince Harry, and he thinks that she is “amazing”
Thomas Markle Sr. is Meghan’s father. The once lighting director filled for bankruptcy in 2016, which has turned to one of the same sources of family accusations against Meghan. He now lives a seemingly laid back life in Mexico.
Samantha Grant (who now goes by Markle) is Meghan’s half-sister. They have the same father, and Samantha is 17 years older than Meghan. She is has been the most outspoken member of Meghan’s family since her courtship with Harry in 2016. She is said to be writing a memoir called “The Diary of Princess Pushy’s Sister.” According to Samantha, it is less a tell-all and more to do “with the interracial evolution of this country through the lens of my life and my family since the civil rights act until present.” Keep in mind that while Meghan Markle is bi-racial, her half-siblings are not.
Thomas Markle Jr. allegedlyIs Meghan’s half-brother. They also share a father and he is 11 years her senior. He was arrested last year for holding a gun to his girlfriend’s head and has been said to struggle with alcohol issues in the past. He has two sons, Tyler and Thomas Dooley (Thomas Jr. Jr.?), with ex-wife Tracy Dooley.
It all started when…
December 28, 2017: Markle’s slams Harry for saying the royals are “the family she never had”
Meghan’s siblings were quick to respond to a BBC interview where Prince Harry referred to the royals are “the family [Meghan] never had.” Brother Thomas Jr., told the Daily Mail that their father was “extremely hurt” over this comment and said that “obviously, she had a family. She was very privileged. She got everything she ever wanted.” Half-sister Samantha also responded via Twitter (which she has now made private), saying: “Actually she has a large family who were always there with her and for her. Our household was very normal and when dad and Doria divorced, we all made it so it was like she had two houses. No one was estranged ,she was just too busy. Read my book complete with facts and photos.”
Jan 10, 2018: Samantha Markle calls sister out for engagement photo
Half-sister Samantha did an interview with In Touch where she gave insight on the actress’s childhood, as well as speaking about their father, and saying that Meghan’s mother Doria has become “possessive and controlling” over Meghan. Samantha claims that Meghan owes much her success to their father, saying that “he gave her so much of who she is.” She then went on to call-out her half-sister about not helping their father with his financial troubles, mentioning the $75,000 Ralph & Russo gown she wore in her engagement photos. “If you can spend $75,000 on a dress, you can spend $75,000 on your dad.”
Feb 5, 2018: Samantha says that she’s disappointed in Meghan
In an interview with Australian news show A Current Affair, Samantha Markle continued to call out Meghan for not helping their father financially since he declared for bankruptcy in 2016. “I don’t think that he feels that she owes him but, that is how I see it,” said Samantha. She then went on to seemingly discredit Meghan’s philanthropic work by saying that she’s see “a lot of situations where celebrities visit a place that is poverty stricken and they’re wearing impeccable clothing. They themselves are wealthy, and it really feels like a photo opportunity. So is a little exploitive in my mind.”
February 8, 2018: Thomas Jr. says that Meghan is “ignoring” his plea for help
Meghan’s brother Thomas Jr. told In Touch magazine that he has received no help from his younger sibling in light of her royal engagement. According to Tom Jr. the connection to Meghan has caused a lot of media scrutiny for him and his family. “There was a time where people were following me around at work, taking pictures and posting horrible stories about me and my family saying I’m a white supremacist, a drug addict and a dealer, all this crap that just isn’t true,” said Thomas Jr. Thomas’s lawyer has been in contact with the palace lawyers in hopes of getting some help with the negative press, but the interactions have been less than successful.
February 24, 2018: Samantha’s ex-husband speaks out
Samantha Markle’s ex-husband, Scott Rasmussen, told The Mirror that the royal couple should refrain from inviting the bride’s half-sister to their nuptials. According to Rasmussen, his “fame hungry” ex-wife is exaggerating her relationship with Meghan. “Harry and Meghan need to know the truth about her. She’s the last person who should be at Windsor Castle,” said Rasmussen. Rasmussen also said that his ex-wife “should act with some dignity, keep her mouth shut, and leave everybody else alone.” Samantha responded by saying that Rasmussen “wants to take advantage of my sister’s high profile. Scott vowed to get revenge when we got divorced. He is saying anything he can right now to disparage me.”
Mar 11, 2018: Brother Thomas Jr. does not receive wedding invite
An inside source told UK news outlet Express that Meghan’s brother, Thomas Jr., will not be invited to her wedding. The source said that her brother did not receive an invite due to all the interviews he has done with the media about his sister. “If he would quit talking to the media, Meghan would probably be more into the idea of inviting him,” said the source.
March 26: Meghan’s nephew and former sister-in-law confirm that they won’t be going to the wedding
Meghan’s nephew Tyler Dooley and his mother Tracy have revealed that they have not been invited to the royal wedding, according to and interview with Good Morning Britain. Tyler said that they have not received an invite to the wedding but remains optimistic, saying “At this point, who knows? This all goes back to Meghan, it’s her day and her happiness.” Tyler’s mother Tracy, who was married to Meghan’s half-brother Tom Jr., added “I don’t think we’re going to get an invitation, and that’s fine.We’re OK with that and we’re supporting her. We’re so proud of her.”
March 28 2018: Meghan’s estranged family are revealed as wedding correspondents
An inside source told Us Weekly that Meghan’s half-sister Samantha, nephew Tyler and ex-sister-in-law Tracy are planning to fly to London to be correspondents for the royal wedding.
April 14, 2018: Meghan’s nephew making commemorative cannabis
Tyler Dooley, son of Thomas Jr., is planning to make a special hybrid of weed to celebrate his aunt’s marriage. The unofficial weed for the royal wedding is appropriately named The Markle Sparkle. If for some reason the couple would like to try the custom cannabis, he told the Daily Mail that he would be “more than happy” to provide them with a sample, being that they come to Oregon where Dooley is a licensed medical marijuana grower.
April 23, 2018: Meghan’s niece begs family to leave Meghan alone
Meghan’s niece has spoken out in hopes that her family will leave her aunt alone, according to Metro UK. The estranged-daughter of Meghan’s sister Samantha said she is “embarrassed” by her mother’s actions and that her mom’s interest in having a relationship with Meghan came after she started dating Prince Harry. “She wanted to be nice, to be friends, to say how much she loves her sister – but after years of telling me and the rest of the family how much she hates Meghan, how much of a narcissist Meghan apparently is and what a horrible woman Meghan is, which isn’t true at all.”
May 2, 2018: Thomas Jr. tells Harry not to marry Meghan
Meghan Markle’s half-brother has sent a letter to future brother-in-law Prince Harry as a final plea to call of the wedding.“Meghan Markle is obviously not the right [woman] for you,” writes Thomas in a letter shared exclusively with In Touch. Markle’s brother then goes on to accuse her of abandoning their father after using him for money. “She easily forgets if it wasn’t for my father she would be [bussing] tables and babysitting to pay her old debt off.”
May 4, 2018: Palace confirms that Meghan’s parents will have roles in her wedding
Days after Meghan’s half-brother told Prince Harry and In Touch magazine that their father was snubbed of an invite, Kensington Palace confirmed that both Markle’s mom and dad will have roles in her wedding. “On the morning of the wedding, Ms. Ragland will travel with Ms. Markle by car to Windsor Castle. Mr. Markle will walk his daughter down the aisle of St. George’s Chapel. Ms. Markle is delighted to have her parents by her side on this important and happy occasion.” wrote a Kensington Palace spokesman.
May 12, 2018: Thomas Markle’s staged photographs
Photos of Meghan’s father taken by paparazzi were proven to be colluded by Thomas himself, along with photographer Jeff Rayner. The Daily Mail reported that the pair were caught on the security footage of an internet cafe in Mexico staging a photo of him looking at images of his daughter and Prince Harry. Other photos that were proven to be staged include him being measured by a “tailor” (who turned out to be an assistant at a party goods store), browsing through a book about English landmarks at a Starbucks and lifting weights. It’s reported that Meghan’s father could have received up to £100,000 for the photos.
May 14, 2018: Meghan’s father pulls out of wedding, reveals he had a heart attack and
After he was caught staging photographs with paparazzi, Thomas Markle Sr. has said he will not attend his daughter’s wedding. Markle Sr. told TMZ that his motives for the images were not “principally about money.” He was hoping improve his image but now he “deeply regrets” it. The report also revealed that Meghan’s father had suffered a heart attack six days earlier, but checked himself out of the hospital so that he could go for the wedding. However the embarrassment of the staged photo scandal has caused him to opt out of walking his daughter down the aisle.
May 14, 2018: Half-sister Samantha takes credit for staged photos
On the same day, Samantha Markle did an interview with British TV show Loose Women, defending her father and taking responsibility for the staged photos. “I have to say that I am entirely the culprit. As we know, the media can take very unflattering photographs on their casual days and blow it way out of proportion…I said ‘really you need to show the world that you’re getting in shape and doing great, healthy things.’” said Samantha. She then went on to say that the whole ordeal was not money motivated and that if her father did receive any compensation for the photos it would be “a pittance.” In addition, Samantha also confirmed that the last time her and Meghan spoke was in 2015, when she called Meghan to talk about their father.
May 15, 2018: Samantha Markle gets called out by Piers Morgan
Samantha returned to Good Morning Britain for an interview with a less-than complimentary Piers Morgan. Piers had her confirmed that the last time the sisters saw each other was in 2008, and she re-confirmed that their last contact was a phone conversation in 2015. Samantha then went on to blame the media for her father’s heart attack as well as the negative portrayal of their family. Piers was having none of it, and responded by saying that “We can’t respect it coming from a woman whose been trading her very tenuous relationship with Meghan Markle, whose had one conversation with her in ten years and has been popping up on the world’s airwaves…Some may say it’s pretty rich coming from you, Samantha Markle, to come on television and blame media vultures.” Samantha then went on to tell Piers that he shouldn’t believe everything he reads just because it’s in quotes. Yikes.
May 15, 2018: Family arrives in London
Also on this day, Meghan’s nephews and former sister-in-law were photographed arriving at London’s Heathrow airport. Though they have not received invitations to the royal wedding, it has been previously speculated that they are going to be TV correspondents on Meghan and Harry’s special day.
May 15, 2018: Thomas Sr. is having surgery
Finally, Thomas Sr. told TMZ that he has changed his mind and now wants to walk Meghan down the aisle. However, he now has to undergo heart surgery this week which means it’s unlikely that he will be able to make the nuptials. To really add to things, Meghan’s father said that the open letter his son sent to Prince Harry at the beginning of the month is what triggered his heart problems. Another thing that came out of this whirlwind of an article was that Samantha revealed that her father did receive compensation for the staged photographs, around $1,500 plus royalties (pun intended?).
May 16, 2018: Thomas Sr. in surgery and Samantha Markle does another interview
As it stands, Meghan’s father’s surgery is said to be scheduled for this morning. In the meantime, Samantha Markle added to her had a chat with TMZ about, you guessed it, Meghan Markle. The reporter tells Samantha that they’ve been told that Meghan has made it very clear that she does not want her half-sister to be speaking to the press.”There’s something in this country known as free speech she doesn’t have a copyright on that and she’s not going to tell me that I can’t speak my own life or my father’s where it’s a matter of public self defence because the media is disparaging us…She’s way out of her league to tell me that I can’t speak,” responded Samantha.
Samantha then went on to say that she and her half-sister do not have a relationship as of the past year, blaming the media for their falling out. However, if we look back two days, Samantha confirmed that the last time the sisters spoke was in 2015. I’m so confused.