When Doria Ragland accompanied her daughter Meghan Markle to church on her wedding day, she drew plaudits for being a strong and solo role model.
Those who know the two women are not surprised at the display of self-confidence.
“Meghan draws a lot of strength from her mother. Doria is classy, chic and confident, but not unapproachable,” Meghan’s friend and makeup artist Daniel Martin tells PEOPLE in this week’s cover story. “I definitely feel Meghan gets a lot of that from her mother.”
“She has a softness, but I detected a steely core to her,” says a royal family friend. “She has come through a hell of a lot.”
Doria, the source adds, “was lovely to talk to and bursting with pride.”
Doria, along with aides like Harry’s new private secretary Samantha Cohen, will be important sounding boards for the new duchess as she starts her royal life.
This article originally appeared on PEOPLE.