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Larry King Live
Trevor Rees-Jones Tells `The Bodyguard's Story'Aired March 21, 2000 - 9:00 p.m. ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
GRETA VAN SUSTEREN, GUEST HOST: Tonight, he's the sole survivor of the car crash that killed Princess Diana. Trevor Rees-Jones joins us for the full hour with "The Bodyguard's Story." That's next on LARRY KING LIVE.
Good evening and welcome to LARRY KING LIVE. I'm Greta Van Susteren, sitting in for Larry.
Tonight the guest is the author of "The Bodyguard's Story," Trevor Rees-Jones.
Trevor, the world watched back a couple of years ago when you were involved in that car accident wondering whether or not you would make it. You had very serious injuries. How are you today?
TREVOR REES-JONES, AUTHOR, "THE BODYGUARD'S STORY": I'm feeling almost a hundred percent physically fit, so I'm feeling very well, thanks.
VAN SUSTEREN: You're an active man. You play rugby. You were in the army. Are there any sort of residual effects from the accident?
REES-JONES: There's a couple. My back stiffens up every now and again. I had three operations of my left wrist. So, that, you know, is not a hundred percent. And I've still got some numbness around the left-hand side of my face, but nothing that's worthy of any complaint at all.
VAN SUSTEREN: You've written a book, "The Bodyguard's Story: Diana, the Crash, and the Sole Survivor." Why did you write it?
REES-JONES: A number of reasons really. It took a long while for people to persuade me to do something. But one of the reasons being that myself and "Kez," the other bodyguard who worked on that trip, have been accused in the media of things, some by our former employer. He's accused us of unprofessionalism that caused the accident. I believe everyone deserves the right to reply. And this is our way of doing it.
Also, I've got two-years worth of legal bills that need and fully deserve to be paid. And also the gap left -- the void that was left in not speaking was being filled by other people with whatever they wanted. And people are always going to ask me what I remembered and what I knew.
So we've done this, and you know, it's done in this method so I could take the greatest control of what's being said.
VAN SUSTEREN: But take me back to August 30th, 1997. Why were you in Paris?
REES-JONES: We had been on a 10-day trip with Dodi and the princess. The trip was coming to its end. We had been informed there was a possible trip to Paris. So we'd organized through London, through our control room in London the aircraft and phoned Paris. (UNINTELLIGIBLE) off we're ready to go. So it was just the last day of the trip.
VAN SUSTEREN: And where did you fly -- where were you flying from when you came to Paris?
REES-JONES: We flew from Sardinia to Le Bourget Airport in Paris.
VAN SUSTEREN: Were you on the same plane with Princess Diana and Dodi?
REES-JONES: It was a -- the Harrods' Gulfstream private jet, so we were all on the same aircraft, yes.
VAN SUSTEREN: And what was the mood on the plane that morning?
REES-JONES: Yes, it was fine. I think, you know, the trip was coming to its natural end. You know, the paparazzi and the media had been following us all along, and occasionally got to the couple. But the mood was fine on that final day. There was no problem at all.
VAN SUSTEREN: Do you recall on the flight at any time talking to the princess or to Dodi? Remember any conversations?
REES-JONES: No, they sat in a different part of the aircraft from us, so were set out of the way.
VAN SUSTEREN: About what time did you arrive in Paris?
REES-JONES: I can't remember exact times. It's a long time ago, but I know that when we arrived there, that -- looking outside, the photographers were waiting for us to arrive. So obviously, they had been tipped off by someone -- who I don't know -- about our arrival.
VAN SUSTEREN: Who do you think was tipping off the paparazzi?
REES-JONES: It's easy to speculate about that, but it could have been a number of people on that trip. I mean, it could have been someone from the airport in Sardinia. It could have been someone who was waiting for the arrival in Paris.
You know, there's a number of people, and I'm not about to speculate who was tipping. All I know is that they obviously had been warned off and they were waiting for us. VAN SUSTEREN: Now, did Diana have any reaction to the paparazzi that morning? Was she upset at fall?
REES-JONES: No, not that morning. The only time that I was aware on that day that the attentions of the paparazzi affected her was in the evening when we arrived at the Ritz Hotel. The attentions of the paparazzi in Paris were far more of an aggressive attitude than we had witnessed the whole summer. And we'd had the attentions of the press the whole summer.
But the way that they follow on scooters and on motorbikes is a lot more aggressive in the way they follow.
VAN SUSTEREN: How do you know that Princess Diana was more concerned with it later in the day?
REES-JONES: It was -- it was obvious that when we entered the Ritz that evening that it got to her. You could tell. And Kez -- I had noticed that when the couple went upstairs for their meal that she had been crying. So it was obviously, you know, the attentions had got to her.
VAN SUSTEREN: Is that the first time you'd ever seen the princess cry?
REES-JONES: First time. I didn't personally witness it, but the first time that I'd known on that trip anything like that, yes.
VAN SUSTEREN: About what time did you arrive at the Ritz-Carlton that night?
REES-JONES: We arrived late evening, I think possibly sort of half past 9, 10 o'clock. We'd been informed that the couple were going out for the evening. Unfortunately, I hadn't been informed of the venue. And this was a problem that had happened all the way through that last 10-day trip, that myself and the other bodyguard weren't given enough information to do a good job as we saw fit. There was a lack of information coming from Dodi. And that night was a case and point: that we didn't know the venue. And that's why the -- getting the couple into the Ritz was such a problem.
VAN SUSTEREN: What did you notice about the interaction between Princess Diana and Dodi that evening at the Ritz? Was there anything significant, or how would you describe it?
REES-JONES: There was nothing -- nothing of any significance. The thing I did notice was at the end of the evening when we were waiting to leave, that they were in a good and jovial mood as opposed to the way that they entered.
VAN SUSTEREN: Now, look at this -- I'm showing some film of them leaving the hotel. What can you tell me about -- is that you leaving right there?
REES-JONES: That's us entering the Ritz at the beginning of the evening, and the couple wandering off down toward the restaurant. Kez follows them, and I'm phoning back to London saying we've arrived and are organizing to push the crowd of onlookers and paparazzi back away from the front of the Ritz.
VAN SUSTEREN: Now, you were employed by Mohamed, Dodi's father. Is that correct?
REES-JONES: Yes, that's correct, yes.
VAN SUSTEREN: But you were protecting and guarding the princess and Dodi, right?
REES-JONES: I was assigned to protect Dodi, and obviously, if the princess was with Dodi, then she came under our security umbrella.
VAN SUSTEREN: How much did you interact with the princess that day?
REES-JONES: You know, all along that it was a very professional relationship we have these people. There's no -- you're not there to be friends with them. But obviously, she was -- she was a warm person. So you know, there would be pleasant chats but nothing of great significance.
VAN SUSTEREN: What did you make of their relationship? Did you think that it more than just friends, that Dodi and Diana were more than just friends?
REES-JONES: I really don't know. All I can comment on that is that obviously something had occurred between the couple, that you can't force two people together. She had chosen to go on that holiday. I would like to think they had a good holiday. But you know, but you can't force people together, so they obviously clicked together. But as to the depth of the relationship, I really can't comment on.
VAN SUSTEREN: About what time did you leave the hotel that night?
REES-JONES: Again, I'm not certain of timings. I'm not going to put my name (ph) against timings. I know it was later on, perhaps midnight, maybe a bit later.
VAN SUSTEREN: Did you have any conversation with Princess Diana as you were leaving the hotel or Dodi?
REES-JONES: No, not at all. When we got to the rear of the hotel, we were waiting for the car to come around. As I said, they were in a jovial mood. They were quite happy. They obviously had a good evening. And I was organizing. I was speaking to Kez at the front of the hotel and trying to inform the apartment where we were due to return to that we were about to leave. So I was busy doing other things rather than chatting around.
VAN SUSTEREN: Were you surprised at the exit door, the plan as you were leaving the Ritz-Carlton? REES-JONES: That was not the plan that I was happy with. Both myself and Kez were waiting outside the Imperial Suite where the couple were eating, and Henri Paul had informed us that Dodi wished to leave from the rear of the hotel in a single vehicle and with no security. And that's, you know, I wasn't that whatsoever.
We had suggested and our advice was to leave from the front of the hotel with the regular two vehicles.
VAN SUSTEREN: Were you watching the princess as you left the Ritz-Carlton? Did you notice anything about her mood at that time?
REES-JONES: No, just that they're both, Dodi and the princess seemed happy. There was -- you know, I wasn't paying, you know, direct attention to her. I was there to protect the both of them. So it wasn't -- not all of my attention was on looking at her.
VAN SUSTEREN: Did they act like they were afraid of the paparazzi or was it more like a game to beat them?
REES-JONES: I don't think they were afraid at all. I think -- I can't really speculate on why the plan was changed. We had advised both Henri Paul and Dodi that our -- our method was to leave from the front of the hotel. There was two vehicles there, and the crowd was pushed back. As to why Dodi wished to leave from the rear of the hotel I don't know.
VAN SUSTEREN: We're going to take a break. Stay with us. There's a lot more to come.
VAN SUSTEREN: Welcome back to LARRY KING LIVE. I am Greta Van Susteren, sitting in for Larry this evening. And our guest, the sole survivor of the crash that claimed the lives of Dodi Fayed, Princess Diana and Henri Paul.
Trevor, Henri Paul was the driver. What did you know about him that night?
REES-JONES: I knew his opinion within The Ritz. I knew he was either deputy head or acting head of security of The Ritz, and he actually driven that morning. He drove the backup vehicle from the Bourget Airport, when we arrived into Paris, and Kez was in the backup car with him that morning, and so he drove very well. When he appeared that night, we both assumed he was still at work.
VAN SUSTEREN: When he appeared that night, did you have a chance to talk to him before you got in the car with him?
REES-JONES: Yes, certainly. We took the couple into the imperial suite to have a meal. And that was a secure area. There was Ritz security to look after them up there. And we took the opportunity to grab a sandwich and a tonic water in the bath, and that's where Henri Paul appeared and sat down to talk to us.
VAN SUSTEREN: Did you notice if he was drinking?
REES-JONES: He had a drink. I didn't notice what it was. I had been reported -- as I said to the judge, it was some sort of yellow liquid. I didn't pay attention to it. He was talking a fair bit to Kez and I was sitting on the other side, but he had a drink. What it was, I don't know.
VAN SUSTEREN: Did you talk to him and think he was slurring his words? Did he appear at all intoxicated to you?
REES-JONES: There was absolutely nothing at all in his behavior, in his speech. He was behaving exactly the same as he had that morning. As I said, as far as we were concerned, he was working. There's a -- it's a dry jump. There's a -- you know, a categoric rule: There's no drinking on the job.
So there was nothing about his behavior that would have suggested to us he had a drink.
VAN SUSTEREN: How far away were you from Henri Paul when you were sitting down in the hotel before you left?
REES-JONES: Not much further than I am to you now, so...
VAN SUSTEREN: Did you smell any alcohol?
REES-JONES: Didn't smell anything at all, no.
VAN SUSTEREN: What do you make of the fact that the reports say he had a significant amount of alcohol in his bloodstream?
REES-JONES: It shocks me that -- if I any suggestion, if I even thought he had one drink, he wouldn't have driven that night. I accept what's -- the findings of the French investigation, but it shocked me as a behavior as that of someone who was stone cold sober.
VAN SUSTEREN: When you got into the car, you sat in the front passenger side, is that right?
REES-JONES: Yes, correct, yes. VAN SUSTEREN: Do you remember any conversation in the car as it left the Ritz?
REES-JONES: My memory stops after we waited at the rear of the Ritz, getting into the vehicle, and then as the vehicle pulls away, I notice that there was a small, light-colored hatchback vehicle, and a couple of motorbikes or scooters with photographers on them followed us. and that's where my memory stops. I don't remember anything about the journey or anything late -- until 12 days later in the hospital.
VAN SUSTEREN: Do you remember anything about the speed of the car?
REES-JONES: Nothing at all, no.
VAN SUSTEREN: The paparazzi, do you see them?
REES-JONES: Only that those vehicles started to follow us, and that was it.
VAN SUSTEREN: Do you remember if any -- if Dodi was talking at all, giving any directions?
REES-JONES: Absolutely no memory, whatsoever. Nothing has come back about the journey at all.
VAN SUSTEREN: In past times when you were with Dodi in a car, was he just a passenger, or did he get involved in telling the driver how to drive?
REES-JONES: I drove Dodi for -- or had been with Dodi for 12 months leading up to that summer, and he had certain -- he didn't like sitting in traffic, and he would -- if he was in a rush, he'd ask you speed up if he thought you were going too slow, but it's up to the person driving the vehicle to do as he sees fit. I would only go as fast as I thought was safe, and that's up to the person who is driving the car to do that.
VAN SUSTEREN: Have you seen the photos of the crash?
REES-JONES: Yes, yes.
VAN SUSTEREN: What do you make of the fact that you survived?
REES-JONES: I can't believe it to be honest. Anytime I look at the vehicle, it amazes me how anyone got out of there alive, especially myself who was sitting in the front seat. So I was just amazed at how lucky I was.
VAN SUSTEREN: What's your first memory after the accident?
REES-JONES: I think it's ten or 12 days later when the sedation -- I was under sedation and that was lowered, of my mom actually telling me that I had been in accident, I was in Paris, and I was going to be OK.
VAN SUSTEREN: What do you understand happened to you in the accident?
REES-JONES: I think I've been told that I wasn't wearing a seatbelt. I assume that's been misreported, that the airbag must have saved me on the initial impact, but then my face and chest hit the dashboard when the car was pushed around.
VAN SUSTEREN: Now you write in your book, "The Bodyguard's Story," that Diana made some statements, was talking at the scene.
REES-JONES: I had -- I was absolutely desperate to remember that gap of the journey that I couldn't remember. This was in the first six or eight months of my recovery, you know, desperate to remember for the investigation, for Mr. Fayed, who was my boss at the time, and also for myself. It had been reported in the papers extensively that what I had up here, the great unknown, would scratch any rumors or any theories of what had actually happened. So I was desperate to remember, and I had various recurring dreams of all the things I thought were memories. One of those being I heard a voice calling Dodi from within the vehicle, in other words, trying to fight someone off from within the vehicle. I don't accept these as true memories now. I think it's because I was so desperate to remember that things I had read or things I had seen were affecting that.
VAN SUSTEREN: Did someone tell you Diana said something at the scene?
REES-JONES: No, no one has ever said anything.
VAN SUSTEREN: Have you ever heard during the investigation that she was conscious at the scene?
REES-JONES: You know, I have had access to the file through my French -- and I've seen the file on the scene reported that she was making a sound, that she was groaning actually at the scene of the crash, but you know, that's all that I have seen.
VAN SUSTEREN: We're going to take a break. We'll be right back with Trevor Rees-Jones.
Stay with us.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED CNN ANCHOR: We have some very sad new to bring you. We're just getting word that the French government has informed all of us that Princess Diana has died. The 36-year-old princess is -- has succumbed to her injuries. We have not been able to independently confirm that, but we are telling you what the French government at this time is telling us.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VAN SUSTEREN: Welcome back to LARRY KING LIVE.
Trevor, how did you learn that Princess Diana died?
REES-JONES: The first memory I got in the hospital, the one that I would sort of put my finger on as the first memory, was my mom telling me I had been in an accident, and through a piece of cardboard that she was able to write the alphabet on and various words and numbers, I was able to sort of try and point and to ask what had happened to the other passengers, and then that was enough for that day. The next day then she was able to tell me that everyone else had been killed and I was the only person to survive.
VAN SUSTEREN: Where -- at the time, how did you react to that?
REES-JONES: Very difficult how to describe it. It's -- you know, shock, being absolutely stunned. That's the only words I could actually use, just the fact I had to lie there and take that, couldn't express any emotion at all. I had a tracking tube out of my throat so I couldn't make any sound, jaws were wired up and head was bandaged up. I had a neck brace on because I cracked a bone in my neck, a chest drain outside, just had to lie there and just absorb it, and that was quite difficult to do.
VAN SUSTEREN: Why weren't you wearing a seat belt, and why wasn't anybody else, do you think?
REES-JONES: I can't answer for the others; I can answer for myself. I wouldn't have been wearing one, because it's not what we practice to do, so I needed freedom of movement within the vehicle, and obviously, I was pleased for myself when it was reported I wasn't wearing one.
VAN SUSTEREN: Have you had any contact at all with Prince Charles?
REES-JONES: Not personally, no. My mom and stepfather only had written a letter to him while I was in the hospital, and they had a reply from his private secretary. And my ex-wife, Sue, had a letter from Prince Charles himself. So, that's the contact we've had.
VAN SUSTEREN: I read recently that you want to go to Princess Diana's grave site. Are you going to do that?
REES-JONES: A few things I wanted to do. This was, you know, way back in the first six months of recovery that I wanted to visit Dodi's grave, I wanted to visit the princess's grave, and if possible, see the princess again, but it's not something I want to push. I was lucky enough to see Dodi's grave site. It was in the Fayeds' Surrey estate.
VAN SUSTEREN: Why is that important to you?
REES-JONES: It's just, basically, to pay my last respects. It's not a great outpouring of emotion. I am not that kind of person anyway, but just basically to say you that you've been there, to pay your last respects to these people. I didn't force -- I didn't try and visit the princess' grave site all that while ago because I thought if anyone finds out about it, it will turn into a media circus, and that's the last thing I wanted. If I do visit, it will be done in a very private and quiet way, and only I'll know about it.
VAN SUSTEREN: We're going to take a break. The story is "The Bodyguard's Story." And we're going to be joined by another bodyguard for the Fayed family.
Stay with us.
VAN SUSTEREN: Welcome back to LARRY KING LIVE. I am Greta Van Susteren, siting in for Larry King.
Tonight, we have the author of "The Bodyguard." We have Trevor Rees-Jones, the only survivor of the crash that took the lives of Henri Paul, Dodi Fayed and Princess Diana. We're also joined by Kez Wingfield, who is another bodyguard for the family and was present that fateful day in Paris.
Kez, prior to the trip to Paris, you were on a boat in the Mediterranean with the Fayed family and Princess Diana. What was your impression of her?
ALEXANDER "KEZ" WINGFIELD, FORMER FAYED BODYGUARD: She was as she appeared to everyone else; she was quite natural. I don't think it was an act for the cameras. She just appeared to me to be a nice person.
VAN SUSTEREN: You say "appeared to." Did you ever had a chance to have a conversation with her?
WINGFIELD: I had a number of conversations with the princess, but nothing in depth, just everyday conversations as I would have with you.
VAN SUSTEREN: Did anything surprise you about her when you first met her?
WINGFIELD: The only thing that particularly surprised me was the fact of how normal she was.
VAN SUSTEREN: What about you, anything surprise you, Trevor, about her?
REES-JONES: I'll have to admit, when I -- on that very first holiday, myself and Dodi had arrived two days after the start of it, and when we met up with the (UNINTELLIGIBLE), I did look to see if I could see her. And just the same as Kez really, there was no air of graces; she was natural and as normal as anyone could be.
VAN SUSTEREN: Was she as pretty in person as she was in all of those photographs?
REES-JONES: I think so definitely.
VAN SUSTEREN: There's a picture that we're putting up for the viewers to see. Do you recognize that picture, Trevor?
REES-JONES: Yes, I'd seen that picture. Someone actually brought my attention to it, someone who'd actually been to America, and I think it was printed in one of the magazines over here.
VAN SUSTEREN: Do you know the story behind that picture?
REES-JONES: I really can't remember it. I think I am just taking bottles of water down to one of the tenders that goes out to the yacht.
VAN SUSTEREN: Kez, there was that famous picture that the world saw of the kiss, where Dodi Fayed and the princess were kissing. Do you remember that picture? WINGFIELD: Yes.
VAN SUSTEREN: What were the facts around that picture? Was that staged or was that natural?
WINGFIELD: I have really no idea. It came as much of a surprise to the teams that were on the ground there as it did to everybody else, I think.
VAN SUSTEREN: Was it a surprise to you, Trevor?
REES-JONES: That photo was actually taken on a trip when we weren't around. It was taken after the first holiday on a short four- day trip to Monaco, and someone else with the couple. And yes, I -- shocked me. I didn't realize that there was any relationship forming between the two of them.
VAN SUSTEREN: What about the paparazzi when you were on that boat in the Mediterranean, Kez? Were they a problem then?
WINGFIELD: Not particularly on the boat. And they were certainly a part of life that was there every day, but all the time that we were on the boat, they weren't a problem.
VAN SUSTEREN: Now that was something new for Dodi, was it not? Before the princess, he didn't have paparazzi, did he?
WINGFIELD: No, not at all.
VAN SUSTEREN: How did he react to it?
WINGFIELD: I think he was a little irritated at times and frustrated that we could never leave them, you know, we could never get away from the paparazzi, but that was only natural, because he wasn't used to it.
VAN SUSTEREN: How long have you worked for the Fayed family?
WINGFIELD: Five years.
VAN SUSTEREN: What did you think of Dodi?
WINGFIELD: I just thought he was a very polite man and quite reserved, quite quiet. He certainly wasn't a playboy.
VAN SUSTEREN: What don't we know about him?
WINGFIELD: I'm sorry?
VAN SUSTEREN: What do you think would surprise us about Dodi?
WINGFIELD: Well, as I say, he's been described as a playboy, and my impression that I got, that he wasn't that at all. He was quite a reserved, quiet chap, more of a listener than a talker, perhaps.
VAN SUSTEREN: Kez describes Dodi as not being much of a playboy, Trevor, but I read in your book that he was planing in August, that very August, to marry Kelly Fisher, an American. What was that all about?
REES-JONES: I don't know any facts surrounding that. I did recognize Kelly as a long-term friend of Dodi's. She'd -- throughout my time with him, she'd visited numerous times, and I recognized her, but as to whether they were engaged or due to get married, that's something I don't know about and I can't comment on.
VAN SUSTEREN: Do you know any relationship he had with Kelly Fisher at all beyond a friendship in the month of August?
REES-JONES: Well, I know in the previous 12 months that she was -- I suppose I recognize her as his girlfriend. As to whether she was around during that first holiday in August, I don't know. The rumor was that she was there, but none of us ever saw her.
VAN SUSTEREN: Trevor, do you know how Diana and Dodi met?
REES-JONES: I think what had happened was that first holiday with the families that Dodi was sort of assigned, I suppose, to be the escort to her, the evenings that everyone went out, and just the children included and Mr. Fayed's wife, and Dodi accompanied the princess as well. So I assume they got to know each other on those trips.
VAN SUSTEREN: How did the princess, though, even hook up initially with the Fayed family? Do you know?
REES-JONES: I don't know. I was -- I came back off a period of 10 days off work. I saw the old -- who was around and I knew that our family, the Fayed family, was due on a holiday, and saw that they had three special guests with them. I wasn't told who they were. So you know, I was as shocked as anyone to -- I didn't realize there was a close relationship between the two of them.
VAN SUSTEREN: We're going to take a break. We'll be right back. Stay with us. There's a lot more to talk about.
VAN SUSTEREN: Welcome back. Trevor, there has been a lot written about an engagement ring. I want you to take me back to the time when they were -- when Dodi and Diana were down in the Mediterranean on the Fayed's ship. Was there anytime when an engagement ring was purchased that you know of?
REES-JONES: Not on the trip. I'd seen it reported that a piece of jewelry, a ring was bought on a walk around Monte Carlo the couple did seven or eight days prior to the accident. Myself and Kez were both with them on them on that walk and we didn't stop anywhere at all. The couple went to shore, walked around Monte Carlo, but didn't stop anywhere.
However, we did take Dodi to a Repossi's Jewelers on the Plaza Vendome in front of the Ritz on that last day. He was in there for five, 10 minutes maximum. I didn't actually go in with him. I stayed by the front door, then I escorted him back to the Ritz. And that's all I know about, you know, any visits to jewelers.
VAN SUSTEREN: Kez, do you know of any ring that was bought?
WINGFIELD: No, exactly the same as Trevor.
VAN SUSTEREN: You never saw anything, any suggestion that there...
WINGFIELD: No. I mean, it's been claimed that we stopped at a jewelers in Monte Carlo but it's just not the case.
VAN SUSTEREN: Why is that so important? I mean, why has there been so much discussion about whether Dodi bought a ring or didn't buy a ring for Princess Diana?
WINGFIELD: I would only be speculating if I -- if I commented on that really. But I can say categorically we didn't stop in Monte Carlo.
VAN SUSTEREN: Trevor, why is it so important? I know that Mohamed al Fayed has been rather insistent that a ring was purchased. Why is that so important?
REES-JONES: That's something you'd have to ask him, why he feels it's so important. All that we want to do and what we have written down here is say exactly what we know and just say the truth, lay the facts down, and people can draw their own conclusions from what's been said. But we're not about to speculate on something we don't know about and comment on things that happen -- that happened perhaps when we weren't there.
All we can say is what we know when we were around, and then hopefully people will read it and draw their own conclusions.
VAN SUSTEREN: Kez, you were back at the hotel when Trevor left with Princess Diana and Dodi and Henri Paul. How did you first hear about the accident?
WINGFIELD: We traveled back to the Paris apartments on the Champs Elysees, and we had been held up in the back of cars because there was an accident. And at that time I didn't know it was Trevor.
VAN SUSTEREN: Did you know there was an accident?
WINGFIELD: Yes, there was a backlog. I was calling Trevor on the mobile and paging him. I couldn't get any response, and I was quite frustrated. I thought he'd turned off perhaps to go to a nightclub, which was my biggest fear because we were so short of men.
And I'd phoned across to the apartments and advised them that there were -- the couple were going to be late because there had been some kind of delay and I was surprised to get back before them. And I was arranging the reception for the couple, for the parking when one of the chauffeurs sprinted off. And at that time I thought he was just trying to get home because there was going to be a backlog of traffic. And then he called me on the -- on one of the phones in the office and said: There has been an accident. It's Dodi. He's dead.
VAN SUSTEREN: How did he know? I mean, where was he that he learned about this...
WINGFIELD: He had come to the crash site. And I could hear him talking. I mean, I speak a little French, but it was too quick for me too -- he left the phone to his ear when he was shouting across to the emergency services. And I -- it was too quick for me to pick it up, but he said, no, I'm here at the crash site and Dodi's dead.
VAN SUSTEREN: Did he say anything about Princess Diana or Trevor?
WINGFIELD: No. I immediately asked and he just said the princess has hurt her legs. And so straight away I got back to my superiors in London.
VAN SUSTEREN: And told them what?
WINGFIELD: Well, there has been an RTA, a road traffic accident, and Dodi's dead.
VAN SUSTEREN: And what about Trevor? I mean, when did you learn that Trevor had survived the crash?
WINGFIELD: I learned when I'd arranged the reception for Mr. Fayed at 5 o'clock at that morning in Le Bourget and we'd driven to the hospital and we stayed on the steps outside the hospital. And at that time we understood everyone to be dead.
And then a chap in a white coat -- I assume he was a doctor -- came up to me and said: "Are you with the security? And your friend is alive." And at that time I was just worried that perhaps he had been mutilated with an amputation. And he said, no, it's just -- it's just his face. He's hurt his head.
VAN SUSTEREN: So you were with Mohamed al Fayed that morning?
VAN SUSTEREN: And did he at that time -- I mean, I know that he has thought that there were others involved in the accident, that it wasn't simply alcohol and paparazzi. Did he suggest anything to you that morning?
WINGFIELD: When I'd got Mr. Fayed into the car off the helicopter, he immediately said, I hope the bastards -- "I hope the bastards and the British government are satisfied now." Those were his words, and I immediately said, well, look, sir, no one could have wished this -- I couldn't really think of an answer, anything but that, because how would you answer that.
VAN SUSTEREN: Did you notice Henri Paul as being intoxicated that night? WINGFIELD: No, not at all.
VAN SUSTEREN: There was nothing unusual about his conduct?
WINGFIELD: No. His demeanor was exactly the same as it was during the day.
VAN SUSTEREN: What do you make of the fact that the blood alcohol suggests that he was intoxicated?
WINGFIELD: I was -- I was stunned when I heard that. And I accept the findings of the judicial inquiry in Paris, but I was stunned because of the way he came across, you know, there was nothing that would have suggested that he'd been drinking.
VAN SUSTEREN: Did you -- did you talk to Mohamed al Fayed after the accident?
REES-JONES: I saw him the day that I left hospital. I was flown across by the Harrods hospital from Paris to London where I'd expected to go to a hospital in London but actually went to the Park Lane Apartments where Mr. Fayed was. And I was happy to do that. I wanted to see him myself. I wanted to see the lads that I'd worked with, and so I met him there.
And I can't remember a great many details about the meeting. I wasn't in a great fit state. It had been a long day. But I just remember him being very, very upset, you know, tears in his eyes and quite distraught.
VAN SUSTEREN: We're going to take another break. Stay with us. We'll be right back with more.
VAN SUSTEREN: Welcome back to LARRY KING LIVE. We're talking about "The Bodyguard's Story," a new book out by Trevor Rees-Jones.
Kez, you no longer work for Mohamed al-Fayed, why not?
WINGFIELD: In April 1998, Mr. Fayed was involved with a book -- sorry a TV program called "The Secrets of` the Crash." And I was working in Scotland on one of his estates and he called me to a meeting and made it clear to me that if I didn't take part in the program I would be looking for another job.
And because I knew that if I took part in the program, I would be seen to be supporting the conspiracy theories, I found I wasn't able to continue. It was a difficult decision because at that time, it was a very good job and good money. But on the other hand, it was a moral decision as well. I couldn't support something that I didn't believe.
VAN SUSTEREN: What do you think he wanted you to do on that television show?
WINGFIELD: He said to me in a meeting in his tent in Blairgowrie (ph) that if I didn't take part in the program I'd be looking for another job and not to worry about the questions because we'd get them beforehand, meaning -- the questions that would be asked on the program. And again, I found it a moral decision. I thought, well, it's just not me. I don't believe this. So I can't be seen to be supporting it.
VAN SUSTEREN: Why do you think that he thought -- or that he believes that others are involved in this crash, that it's not simply alcohol?
WINGFIELD: I have no idea. I can't speak for Mr. Fayed.
VAN SUSTEREN: Well, you know Mr. Fayed, right?
VAN SUSTEREN: And do you know why he -- does he think there's something wrong with the French investigation?
WINGFIELD: I really don't know.
VAN SUSTEREN: Trevor, why aren't you working for Mr. al Fayed anymore?
REES-JONES: I went back to work within six months of the accident, as a target I'd set myself. When I was there, I was asked to do an interview, just one interview with the "Mirror Newspaper," which I'd agreed to do. It was put along the lines of, can you find it within yourself to help the boss? And you'd have to be very cold- hearted not to feel for the man. I felt for him then; I still do.
But I was told this wasn't going to get published until I'd seen the judge again. And a series of events happened where I felt my level of trust was breaking down. And I was informed by my solicitors that if I continued at work, they felt they could no longer represent me. That I was just being seen as a mouthpiece for whatever theories were being chucked up. And I made the decision eventually to leave.
VAN SUSTEREN: Now, Mr. Fayed was -- paid for your medical bills, didn't he?
REES-JONES: He paid for some. He paid for a small amount in Paris. He's paid for a couple of visits to a private hospital when I actually got at home and a small amount of private physiotherapy sessions, a handful: two -- three or four maximum. The majority of the bills were paid in a reciprocal agreement between France and the U.K. by the British National Health Service.
VAN SUSTEREN: In reading your book, what I noticed is that -- is that you lay out that he was very kind to your family during the accident. He put your family up in Paris. I mean, it seemed like you had a very good relationship with him.
REES-JONES: I think I did. I think -- you know, these are facts. He did -- he flew my parents over. He put them up in an apartment. They had a car and a driver at their disposal. And he flew my brothers across when they came to see me. So these are facts. And I'm very, very grateful for him for doing that.
But things have happened since, I don't know why. And I feel quite disappointed why he feels the need to attack me. I don't think that I've done anything to warrant these attacks. He said he paid all of my medical bills which, you know, I asked my lawyer to find out if it was true, and it said it wasn't. And he's since attacked me for -- he says causing the accident. And I find it disappointing that he feels the need to do what.
VAN SUSTEREN: We take another break. Stay with us, we'll be right back.
VAN SUSTEREN: Welcome back to LARRY KING LIVE. I'm Greta Van Susteren sitting in for Larry tonight.
Trevor, why do you think that the world was so consumed with Diana and this crash?
REES-JONES: I didn't realize, and I don't think I still realize how all consumed -- the crash, how it took over everyone. And obviously, I was in the hospital. When I left I saw various videos of people who had made up programs and I'd read back-dated newspapers. But even to this day, I didn't realize the extent of it. And, you know, I don't know why that it became such a huge thing.
VAN SUSTEREN: Is there anything that you've left out of your book, whether because you thought maybe it was something that might be too personal or it's just something that there's just a limitation on space. Is there anything you left out of your book that you thought, boy, you know, I'd like people to know that?
REES-JONES: There's a -- what we've tried to do is tell the truth, but anything that's ultimately personal, that was very private, that's not put in there. And it's not something I would ever be prepared to comment on. But no, there's no facts that are left out of there. This is what happened. This is what happened to me with the help of other people. And they've told the whole story.
VAN SUSTEREN: Kez, is there anything that, you know, when you think back to the short time that you knew Diana, is there anything that sort of stands out in your memory about her?
WINGFIELD: Just the fact that she was quite genuine, really and...
VAN SUSTEREN: Did she know your name?
WINGFIELD: Yes, of course, yes.
VAN SUSTEREN: How often did you talk to her?
WINGFIELD: Every day.
VAN SUSTEREN: And what kind of conversations would you have? WINGFIELD: Just normal everyday conversations, nothing highbrow...
VAN SUSTEREN: What do you have -- what kind of normal conversations one has with a princess? I have no idea.
WINGFIELD: I'm not willing to disclose any details of that, but just mundane things, sometimes -- she did have a very good sense of humor, and that made it easy to work for her because she put you immediately at your ease.
VAN SUSTEREN: Trevor, she had her two young sons with her on the boat for awhile. Did you -- how did she interact with her sons?
REES-JONES: Oh, very good. They were all very warm people, you know. And I think the memory I would like to take away if there is one, it's not any specific memory of what was said or what happened. But one of the trips on the first holiday we took to fairground on our way back from a restaurant that -- I'd like to think that we did the job well enough that both the Fayed family and the prince and the princess -- the princes and the princess could enjoy themselves in a normal way in a fairground. That we worked hard enough to enable that. And that's a memory I'll take away.
VAN SUSTEREN: She wrote you a note, didn't she?
REES-JONES: She wrote all of us. Everyone who was on that first holiday received a printed letter and -- signed by the princess and the princes. And I think lots of -- the majority of the letters had a personal comment on the bottom.
VAN SUSTEREN: And when she -- did she know your name?
REES-JONES: You know, amazingly, she'd probably met that many people, but it was -- she'd always know your name, only after being introduced once. And it was always first-name terms from there on. And I think it was a great skill that was had.
VAN SUSTEREN: All right. We take another break. We'll be right back, stay with us.
VAN SUSTEREN: Welcome back to our remaining moments on LARRY KING LIVE.
Kez, during the break, I muttered to you, boy, what a tragedy, and you said, yes, but avoidable. Why was it avoidable?
WINGFIELD: Well, ultimately, it was a drunk-driving accident, and however difficult that might be for people to accept, that's the truth of what happened.
VAN SUSTEREN: But if you say it's avoidable and if both of you were a foot away from Henri Paul and didn't smell alcohol, didn't notice him slurring his words, how could anyone have avoided it other than Henri Paul?
WINGFIELD: Well, that's the issue, isn't it? We could have smelled alcohol if he hadn't been perhaps smoking as many cigars as he did. We're both nonsmokers, and there was a very distinct smell of cigars about Henri Paul. So perhaps that could have been masking. That's not an excuse. That's just the way it was.
VAN SUSTEREN: Trevor, do you have a sort of like "what if" -- like what if I had done. Or is there anything that you think of?
REES-JONES: Yes, I think that's a natural reaction anyone would have who has come out of a, you know, a tragedy, that you always look back on what ifs.
VAN SUSTEREN: What's your what if?
REES-JONES: Well, I've had countless ones. I've had to run this whole episode through my mind more times than anyone will ever realize. I have to look at myself every day and be happy with what happened. I've had many, many what ifs, but I've discussed it with Kez and I think we did as much as anyone could have done in that situation, given the circumstance as they were. And I'm happy to stand by what we did. I think if I felt any guilt whatsoever, I wouldn't go back into this line of work again, which is what I'm doing at the moment.
VAN SUSTEREN: We've got a caller on the phone from Albuquerque, New Mexico. Go ahead, caller.
CALLER: Yes. Since Trevor Rees-Jones was Diana's bodyguard, why didn't he insist that she wear a seat belt for her own safety?
VAN SUSTEREN: You were actually a bodyguard theoretically for Dodi, right?
REES-JONES: I was Dodi's bodyguard.
VAN SUSTEREN: What about the seat belt?
REES-JONES: You know, I don't know what happened in that vehicle, so I can't comment on what happened. All I can say is what happened with Dodi, that when I drove Dodi around London, that I didn't wear a seat belt because of work and Dodi didn't either. He's a 42-year-old man. I can't force him into doing things. When we left the town at speed, then seat belts were put on. That's all I can say about that.
VAN SUSTEREN: Would you have felt comfortable -- or would you have told the princess put on a seat belt?
REES-JONES: If I felt the vehicle was going such a speed, a speed that was, you know, it was dangerous and going to cause an accident, I think I would have done both. I would have told the driver to slow down, you know, and gotten them to wear seat belts. But that's another "if only" and "what if." I don't know what happened, so I can't speculate about that. VAN SUSTEREN: You know, in your book, Trevor, you defend -- I don't mean to criticize. But the French have a different medical emergency reaction than in America. You described America as scoop and run. You quickly take the person to the hospital. The French stabilize at the scene. And there has been some criticism of that medical care, but you defend it.
REES-JONES: Well, you know, the medical care that was given to me was outstanding, was 100 percent. And I don't think there has been any case where someone had the injuries that the princess sustained that survived. So all I could comment on is the medical care that I was given, it was 100 percent and not to be faulted. So, that's why I defend it.
VAN SUSTEREN: Mohamed al Fayed has attempted to stop this book from being published in England. Why do you think he did that? And failed.
REES-JONES: Yes, he failed. It was thrown out. The injunction proceedings were turned down.
I really don't know. I don't feel there's any -- anything in there bar what happened. And you know, that's -- that's something if you ever get the chance you have to ask him. I don't know why he feels he has to attack us on that.
VAN SUSTEREN: From what I understand, both of you signed confidentiality agreements, and I think that's his argument, at least in British court, is that it was -- that you violated a confidentiality agreement. Do you think you did by writing this book?
REES-JONES: I don't feel I broke any confidentiality. There's nothing ultimately personal in there. But also that was, both myself and Kez afterward, we were asked to speak to the media on various occasions. I did an interview with "The Daily Mirror" and Kez did -- I don't know -- two or three television programs. And that was all organized through work. So you know, the confidentiality about that holiday was broken from that point.
WINGFIELD: That's right. You can't have it both ways. You can't say, say what I want you to say when I want you to say it, but when you're not working for me, keep your mouth shut. And as Trevor has said, there's nothing particularly personal or that breaches any confidentiality about security in the book. It's just the truth as we saw it.
VAN SUSTEREN: Kez, what was work like for you after the accident?
WINGFIELD: It was difficult, because my confidence had taken a real knock. But fortunately for me, the lads in the teams (ph) were very supportive and got me straight back into the job. And...
VAN SUSTEREN: Did you watch the funeral?
WINGFIELD: No, I never. VAN SUSTEREN: Why not?
WINGFIELD: I don't feel I need to.
VAN SUSTEREN: The whole world was watching Princess Diana's funeral. You didn't watch it at all?
WINGFIELD: No, not at all.
VAN SUSTEREN: If, Trevor, you know, if you had a chance to have a conversation with Diana at this point, you know, what do you wish you had said to her that night?
REES-JONES: I can't really comment on that. All I can say is I think if I met members of her immediate family, I could -- I would just like to express my utmost sympathy for what they've gone through. That -- And I would like to say to them that myself and Kez did as much as anyone could that evening to look after the princess.
VAN SUSTEREN: Do you have any criticism of Dodi Fayed in this accident?
REES-JONES: I think the ultimate tragic mistake was made by Henri Paul in not declaring himself unfit to drive. You know, Dodi's idea to leave from the rear of the hotel, you know, he didn't take our advice, so maybe that was a mistake.
VAN SUSTEREN: Thank you both very much. The book is "The Bodyguard's Story: Diana, the Crash and the Survivor." The author is Trevor Rees-Jones. I'm Greta Van Susteren sitting in for Larry King, who'll be back tomorrow night. And up next, "NEWSSTAND." Stay with CNN.
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