Prince William’s ascension to the British throne might be coming sooner than expected — so says celebrated journalist, editor and royal expert Tina Brown.

In a recent opinion piece written for The New York Times, Brown — known for her books like The Diana Chronicles and The Palace Papers — wrote that King Charles III’s illness puts William, 41, “in frightening proximity to ascending the throne.”

Brown, the former Editor-in-Chief of Vanity Fair and The New Yorker, detailed the current state of the royal family in the wake of both Charles, 75, and Princess Kate Middleton’s respective cancer diagnoses.

“The prospect of it, I am told, is causing them intense anxiety,” Brown continued, referring to William and Kate, 42, who could become head of the monarchy. The author explained that the couple had “hoped for a span of years to parent their children out of the public eye,” but ascending the throne would change everything.

Prince William Is in Frightening Proximity to Ascend the Throne Amid King Charles III Cancer

King Charles III and Prince William
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Prince William King Charles Gallery

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Charles announced that he had been diagnosed with cancer on February 5, weeks after undergoing treatment for an enlarged prostate.

“During The King’s recent hospital procedure for benign prostate enlargement, a separate issue of concern was noted. Subsequent diagnostic tests have identified a form of cancer,” the statement from Buckingham Palace read at the time. “His Majesty has today commenced a schedule of regular treatments, during which time he has been advised by doctors to postpone public-facing duties.”

Details about the type of cancer have been kept under wraps. However, royal reporter Omid Scobie shared that the king’s illness is “is not prostate cancer” in a statement shared via X after Charles’ heath update.

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Over a month later, Kate revealed that she had also been diagnosed with cancer after undergoing an abdominal surgery in January. (For weeks royal watchers were speculating about the status of Kate’s health as she stayed largely out of the public eye.)

“In January, I underwent major abdominal surgery in London and at the time it was thought that my condition was non-cancerous,” she said in a video shared worldwide on March 22. “The surgery was successful, however, tests after the operation found cancer had been present. My medical team therefore advised that I should undergo a course of preventative chemotherapy, and I’m now in the early stages of that treatment.”

As the royal family deals with the fallout of the ongoing health battles, Brown reported in her NYT piece that “help from other family members is scant,” but credited Princess Anne and Queen Camilla for stepping up the most to assist.