A "Heartbroken" Meghan Markle Mourns Death of Friend Oli Juste

Meghan Markle reflected on the legacy and impact of animal behaviorist Oli Juste as she grieved his passing.

By Kelly Gilmore Apr 06, 2022 11:00 PMTags
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Meghan Markle has shared a note of reflection as she grieves the loss of a close friend who died at the beginning of the year.

On April 6, the Duchess of Sussex published a note on the website of Mayhew—an animal welfare charity Meghan chose to support in 2019 as a royal patron—in honor of the death of Oli Juste, a beloved friend who introduced her to the organization.

"On January 15, 2022, my beloved friend Oli tragically and very suddenly passed away," Meghan wrote. "It has left me, and so many others, heartbroken and reflective—knowing that the legacy he leaves for our furry friends is beautifully simple: just love them."

Throughout her letter, Meghan explained how Oli helped her cross paths with the organization when she was exploring places to volunteer almost four years ago. 

"He knew that beyond their adoption and rescue programs, their international work to keep animals safe, and their local work to find abandoned pets homes, that I would be drawn to their deep love of community, which transcended the animals themselves, and extended to the people around them," she said. "He was right."

Meghan and Oli were connected by their everlasting love for animals, and Oli also served as a companion to her own pup.

"In fact, it was Oli and his fiancé Rob who helped care for my rescue dog, Guy, when I had just moved to the UK and he was recovering from a debilitating accident," Meghan recalled. "They loved him as though he was their own."

NDZ/Star Max/GC Images

Meghan's three-year patronage with Mayhew came to a close at the beginning of this year. However, she noted that her support for their work has never wavered. Her message went on to share that Oli's legacy will live on at Mayhew.

"In his memory, we will be creating the Oli Juste wing at Mayhew, to shelter the animals who may have a harder time finding their forever homes," she said. "Because much like Oli, they will never be forgotten, and they will always be loved."

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