Mike Tindall didn’t leave a dry eye in the house with a recent heartbreaking TV interview about his dad’s experience living with Parkinsons.
The sportsman’s appearance on BBC breakfast has been credited for his honesty in the interview with presenter Sally Nugent on Wednesday morning.
In the interview, the rugby star pushed the importance of more research into the disease and its symptoms and that those suffering have a strong support network.
But who is Mike Tindall and what is his relationship with the royal family? Let’s take a look.
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Originally from Yorkshire and son of a banker and a social worker, Mike Tindall is the husband of the Queen’s granddaughter Zara Tindall.
The patron of Cure Parkinson’s charity is a former professional rugby union player for Bath and Gloucester and has also represented the country in the England team.
The outside centre enjoyed a successful career and won 75 caps for England between 2000 and 2011.
Mike and Zara married in 2011 and have three children.
The couple met at the Manly Wharf bar in Sydney where Zara was taking a gap year during the 2003 Rugby World Cup.
Mike later told the Daily Mail: “She was on her gap year and in Australia with friends. Clive (Woodward, the coach) had just told me I was dropped for the semi-final, so I went out for a beer with two others who weren’t playing, Martin Corry and Austin Healey.
“Zara was in the same bar; we got introduced but didn’t speak that much. Later on, Austin gave me her number and said, ‘She wants you to text her, to say where you’re all going out after the final so she can come along.'”
Back in the UK, the pair made things official after Zara invited Mike to join her at the North Cotswold Ball.
Four years later in 2008 Mike proposed to Zara at home where they were living in Cheltenham.
Speaking about the moment, he has said: ‘I walked in there and got down on one knee, with the ring. She was on the sofa, so that made it easier. I said, “Will you marry me?”‘
“She started laughing. She was completely in shock. Then, when she stopped laughing, she said, “Yes.” That was a relief.”
They married in Edinburgh in 2011 with none of the high pomp and ceremony that marked the marriage of Prince William and Kate Middleton.
Zara opted to amend the traditional wedding vows to promise to ‘honour’ while dropping ‘obey’.
Their first child, a daughter named Mia Grace, was born in 2014 at Gloucestershire Royal Hospital.
After two heartbreaking miscarriages, they welcomed their second daughter, Lena Elizabeth, in June 2018.
The couple then welcomed a son named Lucas Philip who was born in March 2021.
The family live on the Gatcombe Park estate and their third son was born at home after Zara realised she wouldn’t have time to make it to the hospital.
Mike made the headline this week after opening up about his dad’s experiences living with Parkinsons for the past 20 years.
Mike began: “There is a real place to be building a database that is easy to find for everyone to use, to go and people to share their stories, share their symptoms.
“Obviously, doctors and neurologists are going to differ in their advice so you almost need to read the stories to actually figure out what’s going to work for you, what’s going to sit better with you, so I think that’s definitely somewhere we could get to.
“A resource that people who are newly diagnosed or if people are walking the path and just at a plateau can go and try and tap into and up skill themselves a little.”
The clip also showed Mike meeting people living with the same condition. After chatting with one man, Mike said: “It’s just such a wide spectrum of people, I connect with David because I see what my mum and dad go through. It’s a very similar age when they got diagnosed, very similar story, slower symptoms.”