The 37-year-old Duchess of Sussex was at Viaduct Harbour in Auckland for a public walkabout with her husband, 34-year-old Prince Harry, when she stopped in her tracks after recognising a woman in the crowd.
The pair will depart New Zealand tomorrow morning.
Hannah Sergel, from Christchurch, New Zealand, first spoke to Meghan on social media in 2016. "I think she was thinking that there was no chance that she would win".
When Meghan saw it, her mouth fell open and she was heard saying "Ooh my God" before rushing over to give her a big hug.More news: IBM to acquire Red Hat for US$34 billion
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"She would tell me to do well at university and encourage me to be myself".
Hannah was so overwhelmed by seeing Meghan that she had to be comforted by the Prime Minister.
The day began with the pair being given Maori cloaks, or Korowai, before Prince Harry and Meghan received a traditional welcome conducted nearly entirely in Maori.
But, she did say, "The likely reasoning is more that while traveling on a tour such as the India trip, technically the couple are working representatives of British Monarchy".
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"That this is an issue that they see of such importance that we need to be debating it in the current environment for New Zealand", she said.
She also gave Meghan a letter thanking her for her support, which the Duchess promised to read, Hannah added.