Showing her support! Tennis star Serena Williams couldn't help but gush over pal Meghan Markle while appearing on Stuart Weitzman's Shine Series, a new interview platform that talks to "inspiring figures about letting your strength shine through."
"Meghan is a great person and I think the epitome of strength, the epitome of confidence, the epitome of just selflessness, and the epitome of everything is just her and everything that she's gone through," Williams shared of the former actress, who she first met in 2010 at a celebrity Super Bowl event.
"I know it's not easy, and you can see from the interview that it wasn't easy, but she had so much poise and she still had so much class," she added, referencing Meghan's tell-all interview with Oprah Winfrey, where she revealed she experienced racism and struggled with her mental health.
"I just think that she is the strongest person I know," Williams declared. "I don't know anyone else that could handle anything on such a global scale the way that she's had to handle things that are just untrue — minute after minute. Not even day after day. Just minute after minute, another untrue allegation being thrown at her."
The athlete then revealed why she made a tribute to Meghan on social media after the Winfrey special aired, noting, "I think it was important for me to say something because I'm tired of sitting back and seeing all this negativity that's just not true."
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"Meghan Markle, my selfless friend, lives her life — and leads by example— with empathy and compassion," Williams' March 7 Instagram post began. "She teaches me every day what it means to be truly noble. Her words illustrate the pain and cruelty she’s experienced."
"I know first hand the sexism and racism institutions and the media use to vilify women and people of color to minimize us, to break us down and demonize us," she continued. "We must recognize our obligation to decry malicious, unfounded gossip and tabloid journalism. The mental health consequences of systematic oppression and victimization are devastating, isolating and too often lethal."
"I want Meghan's daughter, my daughter and your daughter to live in a society that is driven by respect," said Williams. "Keep in your memory the fruitage of the spirit is love, joy, peace, long-suffering, kindness, goodness, faith, mildness, self-control. Against such things there is no law."
"I am so proud of you for being so brave. I know it is never easy," Williams concluded. "You are strong- both you and Harry. I love you. I adore you. Your friend S."