Meghan Markle Made Unannounced Visit to Uvalde, Texas, School Shooting Memorial: ‘It Was Not a Photo Op’

Many people have been paying attention to the small town of Uvalde, Texas, after a mass shooting took place there at Robb Elementary School on May 24, 2022. Meghan Markle is one American parent who was especially touched by the event.

After the tragic shooting, the Duchess of Sussex made an unannounced trip to Uvalde. She was also especially discreet about her visit.

Meghan Markle visited multiple places in Uvalde, Texas

Meghan Markle places flowers in front of a row of white crosses with blue hearts at a school shooting memorial in Uvalde, Texas.
Meghan Markle at a memorial on May 26 outside Uvalde County Courthouse in Uvalde, Texas | Chandan Khanna/AFP via Getty Images

According to The Associated Press, on May 26 Meghan visited a memorial for the victims of the shooting in Uvalde. The California-based duchess placed a bouquet of flowers at the memorial.

A spokesperson shared that Meghan, as a mother, wanted to show support to a “community experiencing unimaginable grief.”

BuzzFeed News reported that Meghan also visited the Herby Ham Activity Center, which held a blood drive to help victims of the shooting.

Meghan Markle was discreet about her Uvalde trip

Given Meghan’s popularity, it’s not surprising that fans and the press follow her activities. However, the duchess allegedly tried to be discreet about her visit to Uvalde. 

Sue Rankin, Herby Ham Activity Center director, told BuzzFeed News how Meghan’s security team approached her about Meghan’s visit. “She wanted to come by and just see everything that was going on with the blood drive and to help,” Rankin said. “Her whole thing was she wanted to help. She was going to be incognito, he told me that she was going to be wearing a T-shirt and ripped blue jeans and a hat and a mask and no one was going to — he didn’t want anyone to know who she was because she did not want the press attention.”

Rankin also shared that Meghan picked up “trays and trays of sandwiches and snacks” for the volunteers and people who were donating blood.

Meghan had her mask on “the whole time” and “introduced herself as Meghan.” As such, other volunteers reportedly had no idea they were in the midst of royalty.

“One of the nurses … came over to me and said, ‘I cannot believe you did not tell us Meghan Markle was here. We were standing right next to her,’” Rankin shared. “And the head of the volunteer crew said, ‘I stood there and talked to her for 10 minutes. I had no idea.’ And I said, ‘That’s what they wanted. They didn’t want you to know that she was here.’”

Additionally, Rankin added, “It was not a photo op. I reiterate: Meghan did not bring any cameras with her. She didn’t bring any reporters.”

Meghan allegedly wanted to stay longer. But she decided to leave when Texas gubernatorial candidate Beto O’Rourke came to the center with members of the press.

The Duchess of Sussex has a history of helping communities in need

This was, of course, not the first time Meghan helped out a community. Ever since she joined the royal family — and before then as well — Meghan has done a lot of work for people who need a helping hand.

For example, when she lived in the U.K., Meghan worked with people affected by the 2017 Grenfell Tower fire. And she released a cookbook with them to raise money for the community. In August 2021, Meghan also visited the Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst in New Jersey to meet with Afghan refugees who had just arrived in the United States. 

And Meghan and Prince Harry’s charity foundation, Archewell, has continuously taken on many projects to uplift women and minorities.

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