Meghan Markle's father Thomas Markle put aside his differences with the British Royal Family in his first interview since they announced the Duchess is expecting her first child with Prince Harry.
Thomas told The Daily Mail that he first heard the news on his car radio and immediately thought about holding Markle as a newborn 37 years ago.
"I thought, 'My baby is having a baby.' It was a very proud moment," Thomas, 74, said. "I was filled with love, joy and happiness for both my beautiful daughter and my son-in-law. A new baby is a blessing and I look forward to seeing a little Meghan or a little Harry."
Thomas went on to say he was the first person in the world to hold Markle when she was born on Aug. 4, 1981 in Los Angeles.
"It was in the middle of the night when Meghan was born by caesarean section. Doria [Meghan's mother] was sleeping [anaesthetised] and so I was the first person in the world to hold Meghan," Thomas said. "When they handed her to me and I held her in my arms for the first time it was love at first sight. She was the most beautiful baby. Meghan winked at me and I fell in love and have never stopped loving her from that day forward."
Thomas denied rumors that Markle's mother, Doria Ragland, told him their daughter was pregnant before Kensington Palace made the official announcement on Oct. 15. He has also refused to make any new negative comments about Harry and his daughter, and hoped his kind words would put the brakes on the intense media scrutiny his family faces.
"I wasn't surprised by the baby announcement. Meghan loves children and she and Harry have been talking about wanting a family from the start. I'm delighted for them both," Thomas told The Daily Mail. "She's always been wonderful with children and most of her friends have families so she's used to being around kids. She will make a fantastic mother."
Thomas, who still has not met Prince Harry in person, also praised Markle for her performance in Australia for her first major international tour as a member of the royal family.
"She's doing so well winning the hearts and minds of everyone in Australia," Thomas said.
Thomas' latest comments come from an entirely different tone compared to his previous marks since the wedding in May, which he could not attend due to a heart attack. In one July interview with The Daily Mail, the former TV lighting director even said he was angered by his daughter's "sense of superiority."
Kensington Palace announced Markle's pregnancy on Oct. 15, just as she and Harry were starting their tour of Australia, New Zealand, Fiji and Tonga. The palace also issued a statement on Ragland's feelings, but did not mention Thomas.
"Ms. Ragland is very happy about this lovely news and she looks forward to welcoming her first grandchild," the statement read.
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