Kate Middleton Gives Statement With Prince William In Honor of Late RAF Pilot After Deadly Crash

Kate Middleton has been out of the spotlight since announcing she has been diagnosed with cancer.

Kate Middleton and Prince William are lending their condolences to a fallen pilot. The Prince and Princess of Wales released a joint statement on Saturday following the news that Royal Air Force pilot Mark Long had died in a spitfire crash. 

"Incredibly sad to hear of the news this afternoon from RAF Coningsby," Kate and William said. "Our thoughts this evening are with the pilot's loved ones, the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight, and the wider RAF family."

The statement was signed "W&C" for William and Catherine. This is a rare statement from Kate amid her ongoing cancer treatment and time out of the public eye. 

The crash happened during a Battle of Britain event where Long was flying a World War II era spitfire plane. 

The Royal Air Force has direct ties to the Prince of Wales who was a search and rescue pilot for the RAF as well as an air ambulance pilot with the East Anglian Air Ambulance for two years. 

Prince William prepares to take off in a Chipmunk aircraft during a visit to RAF Coningsby to observe the 100th Anniversary Parade of 29 Squadron on Sept. 22, 2015 in Coningsby, England. - Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images

In fact, William recently shared that the couple's eldest son, 10-year-old Prince George, is a "potential pilot in the making." William and Kate are also parents to Princess Charlotte, 9, and Prince Louis, 6. 

As for Kate, the 42-year-old Princess of Wales hasn't attended a public event since December 2023. In March, she revealed in an emotional video that she has been diagnosed with cancer, calling the news a "huge shock." 

Prince William, Prince of Wales, Prince George of Wales, Prince Louis of Wales, Catherine, Princess of Wales and Princess Charlotte of Wales attend The Together At Christmas Carol Service at Westminster Abbey on Dec. 8, 2023 in London, England. - Chris Jackson/Getty Images

Though William initially took some time off to be with his family amid his wife's health struggles, he returned to royal duties last month. Kate is unlikely to get back to work anytime soon, royal expert Katie Nicholl recently told ET.

"She is taking a period of absence away from the spotlight. Sources close to her tell me that her absolute priority is on her recovery and looking after her three young children at the moment," Nicholl said. "There's no pressure on her to return to public engagements. There's certainly no expectation, and I think it's going to be some time before we see her resume such public engagements."