Prince William got personal while speaking at the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland on Saturday, May 22 — just one day after he landed in Scotland.
"Along with listening this week, there is something I do want to tell you. Scotland is incredibly important to me and will always have a special place in my heart. I've been coming to Scotland since I was a small boy," he began. "As I grew up, I saw how my grandmother relishes every minute she spends here. And my father is never happier than when walking among the hills."
"In short, Scotland is the source of some of my happiest memories. But also, my saddest," he revealed. "I was in Balmoral when I was told that my mother had died. Still in shock, I found sanctuary in the service at Crathie Kirk that very morning. And in the dark days of grief that followed, I found comfort and solace in the Scottish outdoors. As a result, the connection I feel to Scotland will forever run deep."
However, William noted that his life would change for the better years later.
"And yet alongside this painful memory, is one of great joy. Because it was here in Scotland – twenty years ago this year – that I first met Catherine," he said of his wife, Kate Middleton, whom he met at St Andrew's.
"Needless to say, the town where you meet your future wife holds a very special place in your heart," he added. "George, Charlotte and Louis already know how dear Scotland is to both of us, and they are starting to build their own happy memories here too. We have no doubt they will grow up sharing our love and connection to Scotland from the Highlands to the Central Belt, from the Islands to the Borders."
William arrived in Scotland on May 21, and his wife will be joining him later on.
"In his role as Lord High Commissioner to the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland, Prince William will spend a week in Scotland from Friday 21st May to Thursday 27th May," the press release, which was shared last week, read. "The Duchess of Cambridge will join him from Monday 24th May and together they will visit Edinburgh and Fife, in addition to embarking on their first official joint trip to Orkney. Their Royal Highnesses look forward to meeting a wide variety of people across the country, as well as charities and organisations who are doing incredible work on issues such as the environment, mental health, homelessness and addiction."