20 Little-Known Facts About Meghan Markle’s Mom That Prove She’s Just Like Her Royal Daughter

Meghan Markle’s mother, Doria Ragland, almost stole the show at the royal wedding. She was the only member of the bride’s family to attend and everyone was struck by how well she coped with being thrust into the global spotlight. She also looked fantastic in her subtle, stylish, pale green outfit. But who is Doria Ragland? And what was her part in raising a daughter who would go on to become the Duchess of Sussex?

20. She’s a social worker

Doria’s job is an important one. She studied social work at the University of Southern California and gained a master’s degree. And she was at first a social worker, with a particular interest in helping geriatric patients, at Los Angeles-based Didi Hirsch Mental Health Services. But ahead of her daughter’s royal wedding she quit her job with a view to maybe starting a practice of her own.

19. She loves dogs

Just like her daughter, who brought her beloved pup, Guy, to Britain with her, Doria adores dogs. In May 2018, just before the wedding, an anonymous neighbor talked to People magazine about the mother-of-the-bride’s everyday activities. “She walks her dogs multiple times a day or takes them hiking,” they said. That’s something that Doria and the Queen have in common too – the Queen kept her famous corgis, although sadly, all of them have passed away now.

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18. She used to call Meghan “Flower”

Before Meghan Markle gave up her internet presence, she ran a lifestyle website called The Tig. And on it, in 2016, she revealed what her mother used to call her. “My nickname is: Meg, MM, M&M, and Flower (which my mom has called me since I was little),” she wrote. It turned out to be a very appropriate nickname indeed. When Meghan married, she had flowers from the 53 Commonwealth countries embroidered on her veil.

17. She and her husband never argued in front of Meghan

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Doria is divorced from Meghan’s father, Thomas Markle. They split up when Meghan was six, but they were very careful not to let their troubles affect their daughter. According to royal expert Leslie Carroll, who wrote the book American Princess about Meghan, “Never once did little Meghan catch her parents arguing.”

16. She once worked as a flight attendant

According to the Daily Mail, Doria briefly took a job as a flight attendant after separating from her husband. She wasn’t the first mother-of-a-royal-bride to have been in that line of work, though – Carole Middleton, Kate Middleton’s mom, also flew the skies. Perhaps that’s why both Kate and Meghan tend to fly with commercial airlines.

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15. She attended the Invictus Games

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Meghan’s first big public appearance with Harry was at the Invictus Games in 2017. She brought along some support: her close pals, Jessica Mulroney and Markus Anderson… and her mother. Doria was spotted in the stands alongside Meghan. The Invictus Games, which Prince Harry founded, would probably be just the sort of thing Doria would enjoy. According to her neighbors who spoke to People magazine, she’s very into physical activity and sports.

14. Prince Harry described her as “amazing”

Naturally, Prince Harry’s first meeting with his future mother-in-law took place in private. But during his and Meghan’s post-engagement interview with the BBC, Harry announced that Doria was “amazing.” And she seems to feel the same way. When the engagement was announced, Doria and Thomas released a statement reading “Our daughter has always been a kind and loving person. To see her union with Harry, who shares the same qualities, is a source of great joy for us as parents.”

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13. She may well have befriended Oprah

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Oprah, the super-famous talk show host, was present at the wedding of Harry and Meghan. But it seemed that beforehand, she had befriended the mom of the bride. On April 28, 2018, Meghan’s mother was seen leaving Oprah’s sprawling abode and carrying some gifts to boot. Rumor has it that Doria might actually do an interview with Oprah at some point, which would be very exciting.

12. She likes the song “Call Me”

Back when The Tig was active, Meghan wrote a touching tribute to her mother and revealed one of her favorite songs. “If the DJ cues Al Green’s soul classic ‘Call Me,’ just forget it. She will swivel her hips into the sweetest little dance you’ve ever seen, swaying her head and snapping her fingers to the beat like she’s been dancing since the womb. And you will smile.”

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11. She gave Meghan some good advice

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In a 2016 interview with U.K. newspaper The Telegraph , Meghan spoke about the risque outfits that she was sometimes required to wear on the show Suits. Her mother, she said, told her to “never give the milk away for free.” Who would have thought that would turn out to be such important advice? Royal ladies aren’t supposed to wear anything revealing, after all.

10. She and Thomas bonded over a love of antiques

Doria’s father Alvin Ragland was an antiques dealer and it seems he passed his passion onto his daughter. In an essay that she wrote for Elle U.K. magazine in 2015, Meghan mentioned antiques as one of the things that brought her parents together. “I like to think he was drawn to her sweet eyes and her Afro plus their shared love of antiques. Whatever it was, they married and had me,” she wrote.

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9. She wore both British and American labels for the wedding

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Doria’s choice of outfit was, it’s safe to say, a very good one. It was classy, understated, and looked great on her. And in a nod to the union that was taking place that day, she chose both Brits and Americans to dress her. Her pistachio-colored dress was by the Dominican-American label Oscar de la Renta, put together by creative directors Fernando Garcia and Laura Kim. But her white hat was from a British designer, Stephen Jones.

8. She faced racial prejudice

In her 2015 Elle magazine essay, Meghan wrote about her upbringing and how people assumed she and her mother couldn’t possibly be related due to their different skin tones. “There was my mom, caramel in complexion with her light-skinned baby in tow, being asked where my mother was since they assumed that she was the nanny,” she wrote.

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7. She loves yoga

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In addition to her social worker job, Doria is also a yoga instructor. Apparently the practice is a very big deal to her. “She has been coming regularly for the past year,” one of the yoga studio’s employees told People magazine in May 2018. “She seems very serious about her yoga practice. It’s clear that she isn’t at the studio to socialize. Still, she is very kind and pleasant. She always smiles.”

6. Meghan considers her to be her best friend

Meghan and her mother are very close indeed. In a 2017 article for Glamour magazine entitled “The Ten Women Who Changed My Life” she wrote about how much she loved her mom. “We can just have so much fun together and yet I’ll still find so much solace in her support,” she said. “That duality coexists in the same way that it would in a best friend.” Awww.

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5. She’s run the LA Marathon

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Doria is very much an active-lifestyle type of person. The paparazzi often catches her wearing sporty clothes. But she’s not just a casual gym user. In her 2017 article for Glamour, Meghan told the publication that her mother “just ran the LA Marathon.” It seems Doria’s healthy attitude got passed down to Meghan, who also works out and loves running.

4. She helped her daughter plan her wedding

Like any mother-of-the-bride, Doria wanted to help her daughter with the wedding preparations as much as she could. According to royal journalist Omid Scobie, Meghan flew out to Los Angeles to show her mother pictures of the dress and the wedding plans so that she could contribute her thoughts as well.

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3. Her maternal grandparents worked in a “whites-only” hotel

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Doria’s grandparents on her mother’s side were Netty, who was an elevator operator and James, who was a bellhop and they both worked at the Hotel St. Regis in Cleveland. They met there, in fact, and got married. But at the time the era was one of extreme racial prejudice and only white people were allowed to actually stay in the building.

2. She wore a nose stud to the wedding

In her Glamour article Meghan described her mother as a “free spirit.” “She’s got dreadlocks and a nose ring,” she said proudly. And Doria rocked that nose ring all the way to Windsor. (She wore her dreadlocks too, but they were kept under her hat.) You won’t catch the Queen or Princess Anne doing something like that, but thank God someone did.

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1. She’s gained thousands of fans

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There were, of course, many tweets about Meghan’s style and grace during the royal wedding. But there were loads about Doria, too. When she cried while waiting for the ceremony to start, practically the entire world cried alongside her. By the time that the event was over, she had become a bona fide heroine to single and divorced mothers everywhere.

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