By Nate Day
Published January 09, 2020
Thomas Markle, the estranged father of Meghan Markle, is making his voice heard.
The Duchess of Sussex, 38, and her husband, Prince Harry, 35, announced Wednesday that they will be stepping back as senior members of the royal family.
Following the news, Thomas, 75, offered a short statement to Us Weekly, saying: "I’ll just simply say I’m disappointed."
The Sussexes made their announcement on their verified Instagram account, saying their decision to pull back significantly from royal duties came "after many months of reflection and internal discussion."
"We have chosen to make a transition this year in starting to carve out a progressive new role within this institution," the pair shared. “We intend to step back as ‘senior’ members of the Royal Family and work to become financially independent, while continuing to fully support Her Majesty The Queen. It is with your encouragement, particularly over the last few years, that we feel prepared to make this adjustment."
"We now plan to balance our time between the United Kingdom and North America, continuing to honor our duty to The Queen, the Commonwealth and our patronages," they continued. "This geographic balance will enable us to raise our son with an appreciation for the royal tradition into which he was born, while also providing our family with the space to focus on the next chapter, including the launch of our new charitable entity."
"We look forward to sharing the full details of this exciting next step in due course, as we continue to collaborate with Her Majesty The Queen, The Prince of Wales, The Duke of Cambridge and all relevant parties. Until then, please accept our deepest thanks for your continued support," added the couple, who will reportedly keep their royal titles.
"Discussions with The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are at an early stage," it read. "We understand their desire to take a different approach, but these are complicated issues that will take time to work through."
Harry and Meghan made their first public appearance on Tuesday since returning to the U.K. from Canada, where they spent a six-week leave of absence from royal duties, spending the holiday season with their 7-month-old son Archie.
Fox News' Stephanie Nolasco and Jessica Napoli contributed to this report.