Twenty years ago, Princess Diana made worldwide headlines when she was killed in a tragic car accident. What the stories also read was that she died alongside her man at the time, Dodi Al-Fayed (who was the owner of Harrod’s department store). However, it seems her true love may have really been heart surgeon Hasnat Khan, according to her butler, Phil Burrell.

It’s been said that Diana referred to Hasnat as “Mr. Wonderful.” They dated for two years before Phil claims Diana ended their relationship in June of 1997 (just two months before her passing). That said, many think her getaway to Paris with Dodi the week before she died was intended to send a message to Hasnat.

As Burrell bluntly put it in The Last 100 Days of Diana, “[Khan] is the most unlikely character to be a lover for the princess. He’s not sporty, he’s not handsome, he’s not wealthy. So what is it?” It was that Diana loved the normalcy around it since Khan wasn’t in the public eye, especially after her highly-publicized divorce from her ex-husband, Prince Charles.

But if Hasnat and Diana were so in love, why didn’t it work out between the two? Apparently, it ended up being too difficult since Diana was in the spotlight so much even though the duo often talked about marriage. “I think Hasnat was very much in love with Diana, but had really reached the end of his tether because Diana pushed him and pushed him and pushed him to go public and say we’re a couple, and he wouldn’t,” Tina Brown said in The Last 100 Days of Diana. “So she gave him an ultimatum, either we go public or this isn’t going to happen.”

princess diana hasnat khan getty images

Diana (left) and Hasnat (right).

Years after Diana’s death, Hasnat admitted he couldn’t go public with her. “I think she wanted to be with someone who was happy to be seen with her in public and she could do that with Dodi,” he said. “I think that Diana finally realized that Dodi could give her all the things I could not.” Clearly, things would have turned out a lot differently if Diana and Hasnat would have stayed together…

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