Prince Harry gives speech at the Salute to Freedom Gala
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Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are expected to mark Remembrance Sunday, a sacred date in the royal and military diary, with a poignant tribute, according to royal commentator Richard Fitzwilliams. He told Express.co.uk: “They will undoubtedly make an appearance they consider appropriate to the occasion this year.”
The expert noted the Duke and Duchess of Sussex – who are no longer senior members of the Royal Family – already did so in November 2020, when they paid their respect to the fallen by visiting the Los Angeles National Cemetery.
There, they laid flowers, picked from their garden, at the gravesites of two Commonwealth soldiers and placed a wreath at an obelisk in the cemetery dedicated to the men who died in defence of their country.
Mr Fitzwilliams also noted Prince Harry and Meghan already paid tribute to Army personnel and veterans this week.
He said: “Harry made a speech at the annual Salute to Freedom Gala held on the eve of Veterans Day.
“He wore his medals to this black-tie event and joked he was “living the American dream.”
“He paid tribute to the way his time in the Army ‘made him who I am today’ and to the close bond between the American and British military.
“He highlighted his own contribution in founding the Invictus Games.”
The Duke was the guest of honour at the gala, hosted by the Intrepid Museum in New York, where he awarded five Army personnel with the inaugural Valor Awards.
On the following day, he and Meghan also visited the Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst – an air force base in Burlington County, New Jersey, home to more than 46,000 members of the Armed Forces and their families.
There, the couple were photographed chatting and dining with military personnel and their family members.
According to a spokesperson for the Sussexes, the couple met with members of all six branches of the US military and discussed topics close to their heart – mental health and the importance of community.
Harry said: “As we honour and reflect on Remembrance Day in the UK, which shares a date with Veterans Day here in the US, my hope is for all of us to continue to support the wellbeing and recognise the value of our troops, veterans, and the entire military and service family.
“We and they are better for it.”
A spokesperson for the Sussexes also said Harry and Meghan have “committed themselves to remembering, reflecting and honouring service members, veterans, and military families from around the world”.
Prince Harry is a veteran himself, having served in the Army for a decade and completed two tours in Afghanistan.
As his latest visits and continuous work with the Invictus Games prove, he continues to work to support the military community and in particular the injured, ill and wounded personnel despite no longer being a working royal.
The Duke regularly attended the National Service of Remembrance over the years, and started laying his wreath at the foot of the Cenotaph in 2009, aged 25.
He last did so in 2019, days before he went on an announced break with Meghan and their son Archie Harrison.
Mr Fitzwilliams recalled claims the Duke of Sussex was refused ahead of last year’s National Service of Remembrance to have a wreath laid down at the Cenotaph on his behalf.
He said: “Last year Harry was reportedly refused permission for a wreath to be placed on the Cenotaph on his behalf, as it was claimed that he no longer represents the monarchy.”
While Prince Harry and Meghan won’t be at the Cenotaph in central London today, the service will be attended by all working royals.
Buckingham Palace confirmed on Thursday the Queen will break her period of rest and light duty to take part in the commemorations in person.
But, as it has been happening since 2017, the service will be led by Prince Charles, who will lay a wreath at the foot of the Cenotaph on behalf of Her Majesty.
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