Everything You Need To Know About Meghan Markle’s Family

Ever since Meghan Markle started dating Prince Harry, she became an overnight sensation. All of sudden, paparazzi started to hound Meghan Markle and tabloid magazines started to create rumors about Meghan and Harry’s relationship. But people still scrutinized her due to her parents’ divorce when she was young and her divorce from her first husband, Trevor Engelson, in 2013. People were also skeptical about how Meghan would fit in in the royal family since she was a lifestyle blogger for The Tig and a feminist who spoke out about gender equality, both of which is against royal protocol. Meghan and Harry continue to prove critics wrong. They recently became a family of three and their first royal appearance with Baby Archie shows that they are cuter than ever!

You probably know that Meghan Markle’s mother was the only member of Meghan’s family who attended the royal wedding. But did you know that she was a yoga instructor, business owner, and a ”free spirit”? You may have seen Meghan Markle’s father on The Daily Mail or Good Morning Britain. And did you know that he has two Emmys from his work from General Hospital and Meghan often visited the set of Married… With Children? Read on to find out more about Meghan Markle’s family:

Her mom used to be a social worker and a yoga instructor

Meghan Markle's family
Images: Facebook / USCSWAA

After Doria Ragland completed her Bachelors of Arts in Psychology, she earned her Masters of Social Work from the University of Southern California in 2011. She passed her social work license exam in California in 2015. Doria worked as a social worker for a mental health clinic for three years. She resigned as a social worker soon after Meghan Markle got married to Prince Harry in May 2018. According to Meghan, Doria is a ”free spirit” who also worked as a yoga instructor. It isn’t a surprise that she chose to work as a yoga instructor since she got married to Meghan’s father, Thomas Markle, at an Indian temple.

Before that, her mom worked as a makeup artist and a travel agent

Supplied by WENN
Image: Supplied by WENN

Doria Ragland met Meghan’s father, Thomas Markle, while she worked as a makeup artist. At the time, they were both working on the set for the soap opera, General Hospital. She also owned a small business while she worked as a travel agent. Unfortunately, Doria had to file for bankruptcy in the mid-2000s. This was because her business was ahead of its time since before the internet, people did not rely on travel agents to help them travel. Meghan motivated her mother to expand her career and education. She paid for her mother’s graduate school tuition after she became wealthy.

She is very close with her mother

Image: John Rainford/WENN

Meghan Markle and her mom have a close-knit relationship. According to Meghan’s blog, The Tig, Doria gave Meghan Markle the nickname ”Flower” as a child. And according to an article on The New Yorker, Meghan describes her relationship with her mother as an ”us against the world” kind of dynamic. And Meghan also wrote on her blog, The Tig that ”there is no ‘Imitation of Life’ drama”. She referenced the famous movie that featured a black mother and her white passing daughter. Meghan Markle’s mom rode in the car with her to the chapel before she got married to Prince Harry.

Her father is a retired television director of photography

married...with children
Image: Fox Broadcasting Company

Thomas Markle served as a director of photography for the hit show, Married…With Children from 1988 to 1996. He directed almost 200 episodes of the hit show. Thomas also served as a lighting director for General Hospital, Married…With Children, and Santa Barbara and lighting consultant for TV show, Facts of Life. Thomas Markle won two Daytime Emmy Awards for his involvement in General Hospital. One award was for Outstanding Achievement in Design Excellence for a Daytime Drama Series and the other was for Outstanding Achievement in Lighting Direction for a Drama Series. Meghan Markle visited the set of Married…With Children often as a child, which may have inspired her to start her acting career.

Her parents divorced when she was six years old


Meghan Markle’s parents, Thomas Markle and Doria Ragland, got married in1979. This was Doria’s first and only marriage and Thomas’ second marriage. Thomas was previously married to a secretary, Roslyn Loveless in 1964 and they got divorced in 1975. Doria and Thomas got divorced in 1988. The good thing is that even though Doria and Thomas were divorced, their divorce was amicable and both her mother and her father played a part in raising her. According to YourTango, Meghan’s family often sat together and watched television while eating frozen dinners even after they were already divorced so that Meghan could spend time with both of her parents at a time.

She is estranged from her two half-siblings

Meghan Markle is Doria Ragland’s only child. However, Thomas Markle had two children previously to his marriage with Doria named Samantha Markle and Thomas Markle Jr. who are 17 and 15 years older than Meghan. Meghan and Samantha were estranged for around a decade. In fact, Samantha was not invited to the royal wedding or Meghan’s first wedding. They are estranged because Samantha felt like Meghan should have helped out her father financially when he became bankrupt. Samantha is also estranged from one of her children, her mother, and her brother. Meghan has not spoken to Thomas Markle Jr. for seven years since the royal wedding. Thomas said in an interview with Daily Mirror that Meghan ”forgot her family roots.”

Prince Harry loves his mother-in-law

The wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan
Image: Supplied by WENN

It’s always good when the bride and groom get along with their in-laws. According to an interview with BBC, Prince Harry describes his mother-in-law as ”amazing”. Harry met Meghan’s mom early in their relationship and they even both attended the 2016 Invictus Games. It is not a surprise that Harry loves his classy and poised mother-in-law. In fact, the entire royal family loves Meghan Markle’s mother, including the Queen of England. In fact, Doria described meeting the Queen as one of the biggest highlights of the royal wedding. She is the only member of the Markle family who is always welcome in the palace.

Meghan Markle is related to royalty


You probably already know that Meghan Markle is biracial. Her mother is a descendant of African Americans who were enslaved in Georgia and William Ragland, an English Methodist who settled in Virginia, Georgia, and North Carolina. Her father descends from English, Irish, and German immigrants. But did you know that Meghan Markle is a 24th generation descendant of King Edward III on her father’s side? She is also a distant descendant of the Queen, Princess Diana, and Lord Hussy, who was beheaded by Prince Harry’s ancestor, King Henry VIII. She is also related to U.S. Presidents, including George H. W. Bush, Gerald Ford, and Richard Nixon.

And her and Harry are technically cousins

New Zealand House Book of Condolence Caption : The Duke and Duchess of Sussex visit New Zealand House to sign the Book of Condolence in respect of last week’s terror attack PersonInImage : Prince Harry,Duke of Sussex,Meghan,Duchess of Sussex,Meghan Markle Credit : John Rainford/WENN
Image: John Rainford/WENN

17th cousins, that is. Since Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are both related to King Edwards III, this makes them cousins from the 14th century. They can also be traced more recently from High Sheriff, Ralph Bowes. His granddaughter married John Hussey of Dorking. And his grandson, Christopher Hussey moved to America, which explains Meghan’s ancestry. Does this mean that their DNA is very similar to each other? Not necessarily. While it is not true that everyone is our 17th cousin, according to genealogists, we have over a million 17th cousins. Therefore, there is about a one in 700 chance that you would reunite with one of your 17th cousins.

Archie’s middle name means ”son of Harry”


After Buckingham Palace announced Meghan Markle’s pregnancy, people were excited to find out whether the baby would be a boy or a girl, which is only announced after the baby is born. They were also excited to find out what Meghan and Harry would name the baby. Popular guesses included Philip, Spencer, and Henry, Harry’s birth name. However, it shocked the world when Meghan and Harry announced that they chose the name Archie for their sweet baby boy. Archie is a popular choice in Britain since it is the #18 most popular baby name. The name means ”truly brave”. Meghan and Harry unsurprisingly referenced Archie’s royal father in his middle name, Harrison, which means ”son of Harry”.

Samantha Markle spoke up about her father not being present for the royal birth


The royal birth was a joyous moment for Meghan, Harry, Doria, and the rest of the royal family. However, Meghan’s half-sister, Samantha, felt like it was a sad moment for her dad since he did not get to travel to England to meet his new grandson. She described it as a ”dagger to his heart” that he didn’t get to meet his ”creative, loving grandfather”. Samantha even went so far as to blame Doria for Thomas Markle not seeing his grandson. She said that Doria should have told Meghan to ”get your dad out here” and the fact that she did not do that shows ”a lack of effort”. She even accused Doria of not helping Meghan to heal her relationship with her dad.

Thomas Markle did not attend his daughter’s wedding

Meghan and her father had a close relationship when she was a child and a young adult. That is why it is so sad that Thomas was not able to attend his daughter’s wedding to Prince Harry. All of the drama started when Thomas Markle staged paparazzi photos of him trying on a suit presumably for his daughter’s wedding. Afterward, he announced that he will not be attending his daughter’s wedding due to heart issues, even though he previously told TMZ that he wanted to attend despite the scandal. Although Meghan Markle was happy that she had Harry’s father, Prince Charles, to walk her to the aisle, she cried because her dad was not able to make it to her big day.

Thomas Markle even went to the press to speak out about his relationship with Meghan

Meghan Markle's family
Images: ITV / Good Morning Britain

Meghan Markle begged her father not to go to the press to speak out about their relationship according to ET. And Thomas’ son-in-law, Prince Harry, warned his father-in-law that the press will ”eat him alive”. However, Thomas Markle still chose to turn to multiple outlets, including Good Morning Britain and The Daily Mail. He told The Daily Mail that Meghan has a ”sense of superiority” and that ”he made her” and ”she would be nothing without him”. When he interviewed with Good Morning Britain, he told Piers Morgan about Meghan and Harry’s plans to have a baby and Harry’s views on Brexit and Donald Trump.

Meghan Markle did not speak to her father since the royal wedding

Image: Instagram/@duchessmeghanforever

Meghan Markle has cut Thomas Markle off due to all of the drama so that she could focus on her marriage with Prince Harry, her royal duties, and being a new mother to her son, Archie Harrison. But she also wrote a letter to her father to explain how much the situation has ”broken her heart into a million pieces”. She said that he never called her to tell her that he wouldn’t be attending her wedding, she did help him financially, and that he has not done anything to defend her when his other daughter, Samantha criticized her publicly. She told him that she ”has only ever loved, protected, and defended” her father.

Thomas Markle congratulated Meghan after the royal birth


When the royal baby Archie Harrison was born, Thomas Markle had positive things to say. He released a statement to The Sun saying: ”I’m delighted to hear that mother and child are doing well. I am proud that my new grandson is born into the British royal family and I am sure that he will grow up to serve the crown and the people of Britain with grace, dignity, and honor. God bless the child, and I wish him health and happiness, and my congratulations to my lovely daughter Duchess Meghan and Prince Harry, and God save the Queen.” It was refreshing to see Thomas speak positively about Meghan and the rest of the royal family.

But Thomas Markle is trying to reconcile his relationship with Meghan

Meghan Markle's family
Images: ITV / Good Morning Britain

Even though Prince Harry’s warnings about the ”press eating Thomas alive” came true, he did not stop going to the press to express his feelings about the situation. This time he went to Good Morning Britain to express his desire to reconcile with his daughter. He tells Good Morning Britain that ‘there has to be a place for me, I’m her father – and I will be a grandfather to her children.’ Interestingly enough, he also told The Daily Mail earlier: “I have been frozen out and I can’t stay silent. I have made dozens of attempts to reach my daughter via text and letters, but she and Harry have put up a wall of silence.”

Thomas Markle Jr. spoke out after Meghan Markle gave birth


Meghan’s dad and half-sister, Thomas and Samantha Markle, are not the only ones to make statements after Meghan gave birth to her first child. Thomas Markle’s son, Thomas Markle Jr. also expressed his opinion about the situation. He told The Sun that he hopes that Meghan will ”learn the importance of family” after becoming a mother. He elaborates that he feels as if Meghan should let the family, especially her father, come to meet the baby. Childbirth and the first few weeks with the baby are very emotional, intimate moments. Therefore, it is understandable why Meghan would not want people who called her ”a shallow social climber” and a ”phony” around her newborn.

Thomas Markle won three-quarter of a million dollars in the lottery


In 1990, Thomas Markle won $750,000 in the California State Lottery. Thomas Markle spent all of the money. He used some of the money to fund Meghan’s acting career. By 2016, Thomas Markle filed for bankruptcy and is about $30,000 in debt. Thomas Markle’s bankruptcy created a rift in Meghan’s relationship with her half-sister, Samantha, who felt as if Meghan should help her father out financially. Meghan spoke out in a letter to her father in February 2019 to say that she did help out her father with finances and he even told her that ”if he depended on her too much financially, he’s sorry.”

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