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Harry tasked private secretary Jamie Lowther-Pinkerton with procuring the police’s file on his mother’s death for him, Diana’s younger son having refused to look at any crash photos or immerse himself in the details—until then.
When Jamie handed him the file a few days later, he told Harry he’d “gone through and removed the more…’challenging’ [photos]. For your sake. I was frustrated. But I didn’t argue. If LP didn’t think I could handle them, then I probably couldn’t. I thanked him for protecting me. He said he’d leave me to it, then walked out.”
Not long after, Harry was in Paris for the 2007 Rugby World Cup, and he asked his driver to take him through the Pont de l’Alma tunnel, the scene of the fatal car crash. Moreover, he wanted to go 65 miles an hour—the same speed Diana’s car was going when her driver lost control and ran into a pillar, Harry explains.
“We zipped ahead, went over the lip at the tunnel’s entrance, the bump that supposedly sent Mummy’s Mercedes veering off course. But the lip was nothing. We barely felt it,” he writes. “As the car entered the tunnel I leaned forward, watched the light change to a kind of watery orange, watched the concrete pillars flicker past. I counted them, counted my heartbeats, and in a few seconds we emerged from the other side. I sat back. Quietly I said: Is that all of it? It’s…nothing. Just a straight tunnel…No reason anyone should ever die inside it.”
He thought recreating that moment might help him, he recalls, but instead, “it brought on the start of Pain, Part Deux.”
Later he told William about it, and his brother said he’d made the same drive. It turned out they were both eager to have the inquiry into their mum’s death reopened, Harry writes, but palace officials persuaded them to drop it. (An inquest began in October 2007 and the following spring the findings stated that Diana was unlawfully killed due to the “gross negligence” of the driver of her car, Henri Paul, and the paparazzi who followed them into the tunnel. Harry and William said in April 2008 they were “hugely grateful” for the verdict.)