Prince William missed a royal engagement because of a 'personal matter' as King Charles and Kate Middleton remain absent from the public eye

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  • Prince William missed a Service of Thanksgiving on Tuesday due to "a personal matter."

  • William's absence comes as King Charles III and Kate Middleton continue to miss public duty.

  • Experts previously told Business Insider the royal family needs William while his father is sick.

Prince William didn't attend a royal engagement on Tuesday.

Queen Camilla and other members of the royal family attended a Service of Thanksgiving for King Constantine of Greece at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle. Constantine died at 82 in January. He and Charles were second cousins, and Constantine was one of William's godfathers.

William was scheduled to attend the ceremony but missed it because of a personal matter, Kensington Palace said.

King Charles and Kate Middleton did not attend the service either, as both are abstaining from public-facing duties as they manage their health.

Kensington Palace did not specify what kept the prince from the event, but they did say the Princess of Wales was doing well.

The royals were already missing King Charles and Kate Middleton at the event

In January, Kensington Palace announced that Kate underwent a "planned abdominal surgery." She was in the hospital for a little over a week and has been recovering at Windsor Castle since January 29. Her office said that she will be "unlikely to return to public duties until after Easter."

On the same day, Buckingham Palace shared that King Charles underwent a successful procedure for a benign prostate enlargement. But on February 5, the palace revealed in a statement that during the procedure, "a separate issue of concern" was discovered, and the king was diagnosed with a form of cancer, though it was not in his prostate. While he undergoes regular treatment, he isn't participating in public duties per medical advice.

King Charles III during the state tour of France in September 2023.
King Charles III during the state tour of France in September 2023.Samir Hussein - Handout/Getty Images

The king has been photographed on a few occasions since he began treatment, most notably when he met with Prime Minister Rishi Sunak at Buckingham Palace on February 21. Kate has not been seen publicly at all in 2024.

Prince William returned to public duty following his wife and father's medical issues on February 7, attending an investiture ceremony. He has attended a handful of royal engagements since, though his absence on Tuesday was notable.

The royal family feels smaller than ever

Although the king, his heir, and the future queen were not at the event on Tuesday, the royals still made a good showing. In addition to Queen Camilla, royals like Princess Anne and Prince Andrew attended the service.

But only a handful of those who attended were working members of the monarchy. There are only 11 working royals today.

Members of the royal family attend a service of Thanksgiving on February 27.
The royals at King Constantine's service. Andrew Matthews - WPA Pool/Getty Images

That number drops to nine without the king or Kate. Aside from the Waleses, those working royals are all older, making William and Kate's role even more important, as royal watcher Kristen Meinzer told BI.

"It has generally been the case that the public imagination is most focused on the younger royals in their 20s, 30s, and 40s," she said. "They are most focused on the royals when they are of courtship age, getting married, having babies, that kind of thing. They're not necessarily considered as dazzling or as exciting to the public when they're 60 or 70 or whatnot."

Indeed, without William, the royal family had no one there to represent its future.

Read the original article on Business Insider