Prince Harry’s Latest Request Denied By Buckingham Palace Because ‘He Is No Longer Representing the Monarchy’
When Prince Harry walked away from his senior role in the royal family, he officially lost his military titles. Those titles included Captain General of the Royal Marines, honorary Air Force commandant of the Royal Air Force Base Honington and honorary commodore-in-chief of the Royal Navy’s Small Ships and Diving Operations.
Still, Harry is a British military veteran, and the armed forces are important to him. But when he requested to be part of Remembrance Day, Buckingham Palace turned him down.
Queen Elizabeth was not made aware Prince Harry’s request
Prince Harry requested permission for a poppy wreath to be laid at the Cenotaph on his behalf on Remembrance Day. The UK holiday is similar to Memorial Day and Veteran’s Day in the United States, and it is observed on November 8.
Harry reportedly made a personal request to Buckingham Palace for the wreath to be laid. But, the courtiers denied him on the grounds that he’s “no longer representing the monarchy.”
According to The Times, no one informed Queen Elizabeth about her grandson’s request. They also report that the refusal saddened the Duke of Sussex because of his ties to the military. Prince Harry served in the military for ten years, and did two tours in Afghanistan. He also created the Invictus Games in 2014.
The first time Harry laid a wreath at the Cenotaph was in 2009 when he was just 25. He explained on the Declassified podcast that for him, Remembrance Day is a “moment for respect and for hope.”
“I wear it [the poppy] to celebrate the bravery and determination of all our veterans. These are the people and moments I remember when I salute, when I stand at attention and when I lay a wreath at the Cenotaph,” Harry explained.
Her Majesty marked Remembrance Day at the grave of the Unknown Warrior
The Duke of Sussex says that the act of remembering is a “profound act of honor.” He believes it’s how we preserve the legacies of entire generations. It also shows gratitude for the sacrifices made in order for us to live the lives we live today.
As Harper’s Bazaar notes, Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex observed Remembrance Day last year with a visit to Westminster Abbey. They paid their respects by laying a Cross of Remembrance next to the Graves of Unknown British Soldiers from the First and Second World Wars.
This year, Harry and Meghan were in California while Queen Elizabeth visited the grave of the Unknown Warrior at Westminster Abbey. People magazine reports that official organizers of the event had a wreath ready and waiting to fulfill Harry’s request to be part of the ceremony. However, they set it aside after courtiers turned him down.
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle had their own memorial ceremony in Los Angeles
Even though he wasn’t part of Remembrance Sunday in the UK, Harry went ahead with his own memorial ceremony at the National Cemetery in Los Angeles with Meghan by his side. The couple picked flowers from their garden and placed them on the gravesites of two soldiers who fought for Commonwealth armed forces.
One was for a soldier who served in the Royal Australian Air Force. The other was for a soldier from the Royal Canadian Artillery. Harry and Meghan also placed a wreath at an obelisk in the cemetery. It featured a plaque that read, “In Memory of the Men Who Offered Their Lives in Defense of Their Country.”
During the private ceremony, Harry continued the British tradition of wearing a poppy as a tribute to veterans. The Duke of Sussex says he will continue the tradition out of respect for “the soldiers I knew, as well as those I didn’t. The soldiers who were by my side in Afghanistan, those who had their lives changed forever, and those that didn’t come home.”