Working as a night nurse at London’s King Edward VII Hospital in London, Saldanha answered the phone one night when a pair of Australian DJs called. The two radio hosts, Mel Greig and Michael Christian, impersonated Queen Elizabeth and Prince Charles and inquired about Kate. Not realizing it was a prank, Saldanha accidentally revealed details of the royal mom’s severe morning sickness. Overwhelmed with guilt and shame, the 46-year old nurse hanged herself three days later, on Dec. 7, 2012.
(The radio station later said they were “deeply saddened” by the tragedy, and Prince William wrote the family a letter of condolence from both him and Kate in which he said, “We were both very shocked to hear about Jacintha, and have been thinking a lot about her recently. Many of the nurses in the hospital spoke highly of her and I’m sure you know how great a nurse she was.”)
“The first few years were the hardest,” Saldanha’s daughter, Janice Pinto, 20, tells Australia’s WHO magazine. She describes her family as “coping and getting on with our lives” as the fifth anniversary of the tragedy approaches on Dec. 7. (They will quietly commemorate the anniversary in church.) “She would call me every day at 6 p.m., just before she went to work. To check up. You know, ‘How are you doing? How was school?’ That phone call is what I miss every day.”