The life of Prince William in pictures as he celebrates his 40th birthday

Prince William, second in line to the throne, is celebrating his 40th birthday.

The father of three was the center of attention of the royal family from the moment he was born.

The first public view of Princess Diana and the eldest son of Prince Charles was when he was only one day old.

William was born on June 21, 1982, at St Mary’s Hospital in London, the same hospital where his three children were born.

Princess Diana and Prince Charles are carrying the baby of Prince William.
William was born at St Mary’s Hospital in London.(AP: John Redman)

As the eldest son of Prince Charles, William overtook his uncle Prince Andrew in the hereditary order.

Just two years later, brother Harry was born, making them the so-called “heir and reserve”.

Princess Diana sits next to her younger sons, Princes William and Harry, in 1987.
Princess Diana with William and Harry in 1987.(AAP: John Redman)

Diana seemed acutely aware of the difficult dynamics facing the royal brothers and sisters and sought to break the cycle by creating a strong bond between her two sons.

She remained a devoted mother after separating from Charles in 1992

The couple divorced in August 1996.

Young Prince Harry and Prince William on slides with his father Prince Charles.
Harry and William with their father Prince Charles in 1995.(Reuters: Ruben Talk)

William was only 15 when Diana died in a car accident in Paris in 1997.

Harry was only 12 years old.

William told the BBC documentary 2020 that his mother’s death was “pain like no other”.

Earl Spencer, Prince William, Prince Harry and Prince Charles look at the coffin of Diana, Princess of Wales.
William, 15, and Harry, 12, at his mother’s funeral.(Reuters)

William studied at St Andrews University in Scotland, where he met his future wife Kate Middleton in 2001.

Prince William, as a teenager at the university, holds a notebook and looks into the distance.
William allegedly wore the pseudonym Steve while studying at St Andrews University.(AP: David Cheskin)

They both studied art history and lived together in a common house.

William and Kate broke up briefly in 2007, but reunited a few months later.

Kate Middleton and Prince William on their graduation day at St Andrews University, June 2005.
Kate Middleton and Prince William on Graduation Day 2005(www.officialroyalwedding2011.org)

Meanwhile, William began his military career.

He graduated as a military officer at the Royal Military Academy in Sandhurst in December 2006.

Prince William marches in full military uniform.
Prince William (right) marches during the Sovereign’s Parade at the Royal Military Academy in 2006.(Reuters: Dylan Martinez)

William served in the army for seven and a half years.

He was on active duty in the Army, Navy and Royal Air Force before becoming a civil air ambulance pilot.

Prince William is wearing a military green jumpsuit.
Prince William trained as a helicopter pilot while he was in the Air Force.(Reuters: Phil Noble)

William proposed to Kate during a vacation at a wildlife sanctuary in Kenya in October 2010.

He gave her her mother’s engagement ring with blue sapphire and diamonds.

They were married at Westminster Abbey on April 29, 2011.

Prince William and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, on their wedding day in 2011.
The wedding was attended by hundreds of millions of people around the world.(Reuters: Toby Melville)

Their oldest child, George, was born on July 22, 2013.

George overtook his uncle Harry and became third in line for the throne.

Prince William and Kate show the royal baby for the first time
George’s debut was reflected in his father’s. Kate even wore a dress similar to Diana’s.(Reuters: Stefan Wermuth)

William and Kate’s second child, Charlotte, was born on May 2, 2015.

Catherine, the Duchess of Cambridge and Prince William appear with their daughter in front of the hospital.
Charlotte is the only daughter of William and Kate.(Reuters: Suzanne Plunkett)

Charlotte debuted in Trooping the Color in 2016, appearing on the balcony of Buckingham Palace along with her great-grandmother Queen Elizabeth II.

William left his job as an ambulance pilot in 2017 to take on full-time royal duties.

Members of the British royal family stand on the balcony of Buckingham Palace.
The royal family stands on the balcony of Buckingham Palace for Trooping the Color 2016.(Reuters: Toby Melville)

Two years after the birth of their daughter, William and Kate had a second son and a third child, Louis.

Louis was born on April 23, 2018.

The Duchess of Cambridge holds the waves while holding their new baby with Prince William by her side.
Prince Louis was born at St Mary’s Hospital as were his father and siblings.(Reuters: Henry Nicholls)

Like their father, the three children grew up in the spotlight.

William said his children brought back painful emotions from his own childhood, but his wife helped him with that.

“Catherine and I, in particular, support each other and go through those moments together,” he said in 2020.

“Emotionally, things come out of the blue that you don’t really expect and have never dealt with.

“It’s one of the most amazing moments in my life, but it’s also one of the scariest.”

Prince William and his wife Catherine walk the red carpet with their children Louis, Charlotte and George.
Catherine and Prince William with their children Louis, Charlotte and George.(Reuters: Aaron Chown)

In July 2021, William and Harry unveiled a memorial to their mother for her 60th birthday.

It was the first time the couple had been together since the funeral of their grandfather, Prince Philip.

William and Harry unveil a statue of Diana
William and Harry unveil a statue they ordered from their mother Diana in the Sunken Garden at Kensington Palace in London.(Reuters: Dominic Lipinski)

Together, William and Kate, Harry and Megan were seen as the “Fab Four” when Megan first entered the royal life.

But the couple’s relationship deteriorated over time, culminating in the resignation of Harry and Meghan as senior members of the royal family in early 2021.

Prince Harry, Meghan Markle, Catherine and Prince William sit and smile during the interview.
Harry, Megan, Kate and William were named the royal “Fab Four”.(Reuters: Chris Jackson)

As his brother retired, William intensified in recent years as the Queen gradually handed over more responsibilities to Charles and William.

At 73, Charles faces the challenges of the post-Zabetan world just as much as his son.

William showed that he was ready to be critical of the House of Windsor and to strive to keep the monarchy relevant in modern British society.

The royal family stands on the balcony and waves to the public.
The recent wave of the Trooping the Color balcony had a paired royal look, including William and his family.(Reuters: Leon Neal)

During his recent royal tour of the Caribbean, he was receptive to Jamaica’s intention to become a republic.

“Catherine and I are committed to the service,” he said.

“For us, it’s not about telling people what to do. It’s about serving and supporting in any way they think is best.”

Prince William and Catherine shake hands with people during a visit to Trench Town in the Caribbean.
Prince William and his wife Kate shake hands with people during a visit to Trench Town in Jamaica.(Reuters: Chris Jackson)

This month, William took to the streets of London to sell copies of the Big Issue, a magazine that supports people experiencing homelessness.

Part of his and Catherine’s ongoing role is to position themselves as advocates for issues like homelessness and mental health.

In an article for the magazine, William pledged to continue to do what I can to shed light on this solvable issue.

“And while I may seem like one of the most incredible proponents of this goal, I have always believed that I use my platform to help tell those stories and draw attention and action to those who are fighting,” he wrote.

“I plan to do it now that I’m 40, even more than in the past.”

British Prince William works as a salesman for The Big Issue on the street.
Prince William works as a salesman for The Big Issue on a street in London.(Reuters: Andy Parsons / The Big Issue)

in AP

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