Meghan Markle and Prince Harry secretly move to Los Angeles ahead of coronavirus lockdown, reports say

Los Angeles News

President Donald Trump tweeted Sunday that the U.S. government will not pay for Prince Harry and Meghan’s security if the royal couple move to Los Angeles as reported.

A spokeswoman for the royal couple said the family had not asked for help.

“The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have no plans to ask the U.S. government for security resources. Privately funded security arrangements have been made,” the spokeswoman said.

U.S. and British news media have reported that Harry and Meghan fled Canada this month to take up residence in Los Angeles. The Sussexes have not confirmed the move.

The couple will officially step down from their roles as “senior working royals” on Tuesday, relinquishing patronages of charities and titles. They will no longer be referred to as His or Her Royal Highness, and they have agreed, at the palace’s insistence, to stop using their SussexRoyal brand.

Trump tweeted he was “a great friend and admirer of the Queen and the United Kingdom,” but added: “They must pay!”

The Daily Mail splashed the president’s edict on its front page on Monday, under the headline: “TRUMP: WE WON’T PAY FOR MEGXIT!”

The president’s afternoon tweet came as New York City warned that it was running low of medical supplies and California reported 5,565 confirmed COVID-19 cases and 121 deaths by Sunday evening.

Trump’s tweet followed others about the high TV ratings his press briefings on the coronavirus have garnered, matching viewership of the season finale of “The Bachelor.”

— The Washington Post

Country singer dies after virus diagnosis

Country singer Joe Diffie, who had a string of hits in the 1990s with chart-topping ballads and honky-tonk singles like “Home” and “Pickup Man,” has died after testing positive for COVID-19. He was 61.

Diffie on Friday announced he had contracted the coronavirus, becoming the first country star to go public with such a diagnosis.

Diffie’s publicist Scott Adkins said the singer died Sunday in Nashville, Tennessee, due to complications from the virus.

Diffie, a native of Tulsa, Oklahoma, was a member of the Grand Ole Opry for more than 25 years. His hits included “Honky Tonk Attitude,” “Prop Me Up Beside the Jukebox (If I Die),” “Bigger Than the Beatles” and “If the Devil Danced (In Empty Pockets).”

Toby Keith extended his condolences to Diffie’s family, saying in a statement, “A great traditional voice will live on cuz I’m putting his music on now. Here’s a beer to ya, Joe. Go get your reward.”

Diffie is survived by his wife, Tara Terpening Diffie, and seven children from four marriages.

— Associated Press

Virus-stricken Prine in critical condition

The family of John Prine says the singer-songwriter is critically ill and has been placed on a ventilator while being treated for COVID-19-type symptoms.

A message posted on Prine’s Twitter page Sunday said the “Angel from Montgomery” singer has been hospitalized since Thursday and his condition worsened on Saturday.

Prine’s wife and manager Fiona Whelan Prine earlier this month said that she had tested positive for the coronavirus. She said the couple were quarantined and isolated from each other.

The 73-year-old Prine, one of the most influential in folk and country music, has twice fought cancer. Most recently, he was diagnosed with lung cancer in 2013 and had part of a lung removed. The surgeries affected his voice but Prine continued to make music and to tour. Before the onset of the virus, Prine had shows scheduled in May and a summer tour planned.

— Associated Press

Ugandan politician playing a new tune

Ugandan pop star and opposition leader Bobi Wine, who released a song urging Africa’s people to wash their hands to stop the spread of the new coronavirus, is criticizing African governments for not maintaining better health care systems for the continent’s 1.3 billion people.

In his new song, “Corona Virus Alert,” Wine and collaborator Nubian Li highlight prevention measures against the virus, which now has been reported in at least 46 of Africa’s 54 countries.

Speaking to The Associated Press about the song, Wine — a popular musician, legislator and presidential aspirant whose real name is Kyagulanyi Ssentamu — said it is time for Africa’s leaders to channel more resources toward building functional health care systems that serve both the rich and the poor.

— Associated Press

Singer-songwriter Jan Howard dies

Singer-songwriter Jan Howard, who had a No. 1 country hit “For Loving You” with Bill Anderson and wrote hits for others like Kitty Wells‘ “It’s All Over But the Crying,” has died at age 91, according to the Grand Ole Opry.

The Opry, of which she was a member for nearly 50 years, announced her death on Saturday.

“Jan Howard was a force of nature in country music, at the Opry, and in life,” said Dan Rogers, the Grand Ole Opry’s vice president and executive producer, in a statement. “We were all so lucky so many nights to hear her voice on stage and to catch up with her backstage. We’re all better for having had her in our lives.”

— Associated Press

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