Prince Andrew Biography: Education, Marriage, Divorce And Scandals

The Duke of York, Prince Andrew, was born in Buckingham Palace in 1960 to Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh. He joined the Royal Navy in 1979 and later became a helicopter pilot, a position he held for 22 years. He married Sarah Ferguson in a whirlwind of media attention in 1986, but the couple divorced in 1996 amid even more media attention. He has worked for the United Kingdom in a variety of capacities, most recently as a special representative for international trade and investment.

Early Life and Education

Prince Andrew (Andrew Albert Christian Edward, in full) was born at Buckingham Palace in London on February 19, 1960. His mother was Queen Elizabeth II, and his father was Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. He was the first child born to a sitting monarch in 103 years. Andrew was educated at Buckingham Palace by a governess until the age of eight, when he was sent to Heatherdown Preparatory School in Ascot. When Prince Andrew was 13, he transferred to Gordonstoun School in Morayshire, Scotland, where his father and older brother, Prince Charles, had gone before him.

In 1977, Prince Andrew enrolled at Lakefield College School in Ontario, Canada, and in 1979, he enrolled at the Britannia Royal Naval College in Dartmouth, where he joined the Royal Navy as an officer and trained to become a pilot.

When Argentina invaded the British territory of the Falkland Islands in 1982, the ship on which Prince Andrew was stationed, the HMS Invincible, was to be sent to retake the island. Throughout the war, he flew numerous missions and assisted with casualty evacuation, transport, and search-and-rescue operations. After completing his first frontline tour, Prince Andrew was promoted to lieutenant and appointed as the queen’s personal aide-de-camp in February 1984.

Marriage and Divorce From Sarah Ferguson

In July 1986, Prince Andrew married Sarah Ferguson, whom he had known since childhood — Princess Diana, a longtime friend, was said to have encouraged the pairing — and the queen named the newlyweds the Duke and Duchess of York after they were married. The couple’s wedding and subsequent marriage took place in the midst of a media frenzy, which contributed to their eventual separation in 1992, as well as their divorce four years later.

Daughters

They had two children together, Beatrice Elizabeth Mary (born on August 8, 1988) and Eugenie Victoria Helena (born on March 23, 1990).

Posts and Patronages

At the end of July 2001, Prince Andrew formally left the Royal Navy. In July 2005, he was promoted to honorary captain four years later. He later served in the British army, navy, air force, and Commonwealth forces before becoming the United Kingdom’s special representative for international trade and investment.

He has also been a patron of Fight for Sight, the British Deaf Association, the Children’s Foundation, the British Science Association, and the Outward Bound Trust.

Prince Andrew announced in November 2019 that he was stepping down from public duties due to the “disruption” caused by his connection to convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein, who died by suicide in a Manhattan jail a few months earlier.

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A lawyer for Virginia Giuffre, the woman who accused Prince Andrew of sexual abuse, said in March 2022 that Prince Andrew had paid her a settlement. Giuffre’s lawsuit against the Duke was later dropped.

“I continue to unequivocally regret my ill-judged association with Jeffrey Epstein,” the duke said in a statement, adding that he would be willing to help with any law enforcement investigations.

 

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