Dodi and the Princess of Wales had been dating for only a few months—and had spent only a handful of days together—before their untimely deaths. Despite the relationship’s newness, there was much media and public interest in the couple, and speculation about their future plans.
Princess Diana Biography
Princess Diana was born Diana Spencer into a very important British aristocratic family with a long history of close ties to the Royal family. She was born in 1961 in the English town of Sandringham, near Park House. Lady Diana was born into a family of nobility. John Spencer, Viscount Althorp, was her father, and Frances Roche, Lady Roche, was her mother.
When her father became Earl Spencer in 1975, she became known as Lady Diana. After studying at the Institut Alpin Videmanette in Switzerland, Lady Diana moved to London to work as a nursery assistant.
Diana’s Boyfriend Dodi
Dodi was born Emad El-Din Mohamed Abdel Mena’em Fayed in Alexandria, Egypt, in 1955. He later went to prestigious schools like the exclusive Le Rosey in Switzerland and the Sandhurst military academy in the UK, which Princes William and Harry also went to.
Dodi was the eldest of Mohamed Al-five Fayed’s children, and he was worth a lot of money. In the UK, Mohamed was a well-known, interesting, and controversial figure. At the time, Mohamed was the owner of the famous luxury store Harrods in London, the football team Fulham, and the Ritz hotel in Paris, where Diana and Dodi started their fatal drive. Mohamed was estimated to be worth $1.87 billion at the time.
Dodi’s mother was Mohamed’s first wife. Her name was Samira Khashoggi. Her father was King Abdul Aziz’s personal doctor, and her brother was the Saudi arms dealer Adnan Khashoggi.
Princess Diana and Dodi’s Love Story
Princess Diana and Dodi Fayed may have met years before they started dating, but Diana didn’t get to know Dodi until Dodi’s father Mohamed invited her to his villa in St. Tropez in 1997 with Prince William, then 15, and Prince Harry, then 12.
After she split up with Prince Charles, Princess Diana dated a Pakistani heart surgeon named Hasnat Khan. Later, her close friends said that he was the love of her life. After breaking up with Khan and not being invited to spend the summer at Balmoral with her sons and the rest of the royal family, Diana let herself get caught up in the lavish al-Fayed whirlwind. She accepted gifts from Dodi like tropical fruits, a roomful of roses, and a Cartier watch and spent more and more time that summer on his mega-yacht Jonikal.
Friends said that Dodi was gentle and kind, but he also wanted to be famous and get his father’s approval, which was hard to get. One friend, Jack Martin, says that Dodi told him many times over the years, “When am I going to meet a woman so famous that she will put my face on the cover of People magazine?” The Princess of Wales was the key to getting both Mohamed’s approval and fame around the world.
That Fateful Night in Paris
After Princess Diana and Dodi al Fayed’s fast-paced and glamorous courtship, it was only natural that Fayed would take Diana to the Ritz Paris since his father Mohamed owned it. Friends said that Diana was just having fun with Dodi for the summer and didn’t plan to keep dating him. For Fayed, however, the relationship meant something more serious and hopeful. He was said to have planned to ask Princess Diana to marry him that night and even had a diamond ring waiting for them in Paris.
Would Diana have agreed? It’s impossible to know, but a royal reporter who Diana called in the hours before she died, Richard Kay, has a good idea. Kay later talked to Diana’s personal assistant, who said she thought Diana would have called it off soon. She was quoted as saying, “It’s a very personal opinion, but I don’t think she would have seen Dodi again after she got back.”
Sad to say, no one will ever find out. When Diana and Dodi left the Ritz Paris early in the morning on August 31, 1997, they were chased by paparazzi into the Pont de l’Alma tunnel. What happened next is tragic and will never be forgotten.
On August 31, 1997, the world woke up to the news that Princess Diana, Dodi Fayed, and her driver, Henri Paul, had died in a car crash in Paris.
Dodi and the driver were both pronounced dead at the scene of the accident. Diana, on the other hand, was taken to a nearby hospital but died there at 4:53 am. Trevor Rees-Jones, who was Diana’s bodyguard, was the only person who lived through the crash.
Following Diana and Dodi’s tragic deaths, Princess Diana’s burial was aired and seen by an estimated 2.5 billion people worldwide. Fayed’s funeral, on the other hand, was a much more low-key ceremony, held at London’s Regent’s Park Mosque and followed by burial at a Muslim cemetery in Woking. Dodi’s body was eventually exhumed with authorization from the British Home Office and brought to the Al Fayed countryside compound in Oxted, Surrey.
Following their deaths, a shrine to Diana and Dodi was erected in Harrods, with people arriving to pay their condolences. Later, Mohamed commissioned a bronze statue of the tragic lovers, Innocent Victims, which was presented in 2005 and depicted the two dancing beneath a dove.
In 2010, Mohamed Al Fayed sold Harrods to the Qatari royal family. Harrods removed the monument and returned it to the Fayed family when a Kensington Palace tribute to Princess Diana was announced in 2018 (an original statue of the late princess is set to be erected on July 1 of this year). The statue is currently in the hands of Dodi’s father, Mohamed, who is still alive and in his 90s, more than 30 years after his son’s tragic death.