Prince William has said he was "grateful" to members of the armed forces serving overseas for the "important work" they are doing while Kate Middleton comforted a boy whose father was killed in Afghanistan while she was on the Remembrance Week video calls connected.
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, both 38 years old, who paid their respects to Britain's war dead at the cenotaph on Sunday, have made video calls to soldiers and women currently serving abroad and to members of the armed forces who have lost their lives to hear more about what memory means to them.
Yesterday, Kate Middleton spoke to families in the armed forces who have lost loved ones to learn how they are paying tribute to the lost and the impact Remembrance Week is having on them.
The mother of three, who wore a £ 79 Ghost-inspired ivory and black blouse, also heard more about the support and help they received from members of the armed forces, including other survivors obtained from the Royal British Legion.
The Duchess of Cambridge spoke to Charlton Taylor, 11, of Rhyl, Wales, whose father was killed in Afghanistan in 2010 and wore three medals belonging to Royal Marine Michael Taylor.
The King, who joined the video call from Kensington Palace, asked Charlton to tell her about the medals and asked, “Are these your father's medals? Impressive. & # 39;
On Thursday, Prince William participated in a video call with members of the armed forces. Pictured in the top row (L-R): Flight Sergeant Gemma Thomson, Leading Instructor Damon Bell. Bottom row (L-R): Corporal Jiwan Kumar Thapa, the Duke of Cambridge
Yesterday, Kate Middleton spoke to families in the armed forces who have lost loved ones to learn how they are paying tribute to the lost and the impact Remembrance Week is having on them. The picture shows the Duchess's call to families of the armed forces who have lost loved ones. Top row (L-R): Chantelle Wynn, Serena AlexanderBottom row (L-R): The Duchess of Cambridge, Charlton Taylor and Sonia Fleming
The young man, dressed in an elegant jacket and tie, told her one was for his service, another for his Afghanistan tour and the other for Iraq.
"It's very special that you wear it," she said to him.
The Duchess asked him if he would tell her about his father, but laughed when he said he couldn't remember much and added: "I think Mom would best explain it, you take the floor , Mummy."
Charlton's mother, Sonia Fleming, described how her husband had died when Charlton was just ten months old and her other sons were 11 and 13 years old.
"Probably the hardest part is doing it alone," she admitted.
But Charlton told Kate that he enjoyed looking at photos of his father and hearing stories about him that she described as "amazing".
The mother of three (pictured during the video call) heard more about the support they are receiving from members of the armed forces, including other survivors, and the assistance that the Royal British Legion is providing
The Duchess spoke to the families of the members of the armed forces who have lost their lives, many of whom are supported by the Royal British Legion.
The Legion provides lifelong support to anyone who has served in the British Forces and their families. They also support families who are bereaved, including help with funeral expenses, ongoing emotional support, and connecting people to specialized services like grief counseling or mental health support.
Kate said to the women, “Unfortunately not everyone can see or even understand the role they play for families like yourself. It has such an impact, especially at such tragic times. & # 39;
Chantelle Wynn of Tamworth was widowed in 2015 when her husband Ryan committed suicide after years of struggling with PTSD after serving in Afghanistan where he worked for six months as a medic in the Territorial Army.
The couple had been together since the age of 16 and married for 17 years. They had two daughters, Rosie and Daisy.
Mrs. Wynn told the Duchess, “Obviously this time of year is always very bad and with its anniversary on the day before Memorial Day, this week is really meaningful. But we keep going and we have a family to support us to get through. & # 39;
Prince William followed his father and laid a wreath at the base of the cenotaph as he attended Remembrance Sunday. The most famous British politicians joined him
The Duchess of Cambridge wore a beret-style allure and a coat with military-style detailing when she joined her husband Prince William at the cenotaph. The Duchess of Cornwall was standing two meters from her on the balcony overlooking the commemorations
Prince William laid a wreath on the cenotaph on Remembrance Day in London as a small socially distant crowd watched
Ms. Wynn said she had no idea what the Royal British Legion was really doing until they needed them in their hour of need, revealing that they provided vital financial and emotional support.
"You are wearing a poppy and you submitted your donation, but I didn't know where the donations were going," she said. "But now I know exactly where these donations are going."
When the Duchess asked Mrs. Wyn if her husband had been open about his sanity, she replied, “He would never talk about it.
Prince Harry "deeply saddened" after his request to have a wreath laid in his name "rejected" by Buckingham Palace
The Duke of Sussex was reportedly denied permission to place a wreath on the cenotaph on his behalf at the memorial service on Sunday in the latest sign of a family rift.
Prince Harry, who had spent ten years in the armed forces, made the personal request to Buckingham Palace but was turned down because he resigned from his royal duties in March, The Times reported.
The Queen was not believed to have been informed of the request or its rejection, which allegedly "deeply saddened" the Duke of Sussex, the publication said.
Prince Harry emphasized the importance of Memorial Sunday during an appearance on a military podcast to mark the event.
In an interview with the shared podcast, he described the day as "a moment of respect and hope".
The former king said, “The act of remembering, remembering is a profound act of honor. In this way, we preserve the legacy of entire generations and give thanks for the sacrifices they have made so that we can lead the life we live today. & # 39;
In recent years, the Duke has marked the day with visits to the cenotaph (pictured) and the memory field at Westminster Abbey in 2016
The only time he ever talked about it was every November when he felt like he was back at war. The bonfire night was just a no-go in our house because he thought these fireworks were him back in the war zone.
"He never really had any problems until this October and then it was literally like being hit by a wall."
Kate, who had a poppy flower on the black collar of her white blouse and was surrounded by family photos at Kensington Palace for the call, said to the ladies, “I'm sure you spend your time remembering loved ones every day, but it is so so important that the nation come together and really spend a lot of time thinking about those who lost their lives and the families who are affected.
“It has been a real honor to speak to all of you, and I think I speak for the whole nation in saying how proud you should be of your loved ones and the sacrifice and valor they have shown.
“I will certainly think of you during this difficult week and it will be for many years to come.
Last Thursday, Prince William spoke to representatives of the Royal Navy, the Army and the Royal Air Force.
The callers spoke to the king about the important role memory plays in their lives, so that they can remember those who have lost their lives and reflect on the physical and mental sacrifices the armed forces continue to make for them Country.
The Duke of Cambridge also heard more about their experience of deploying abroad, the operational duties they carry out – including training local armed forces and protecting international shipping lanes – and the work that is being done to support the physical population and mental health of the emergency services.
There are currently around 11,000 British Forces personnel deployed worldwide, from North America to the Gulf, protecting communities around the world and promoting the UK's interests abroad.
Speaking to heroes serving in Somalia, Qatar and the Gulf during the call, Prince William said, “I hope you know that we are still thinking of you all and the important work you are all doing, and that everyone is very grateful.
“I hope that on Remembrance Sunday we can remind people of how dedicated, determined and brilliant all the people we have in the armed forces around the world are.
“People don't necessarily know how dedicated and dispersed the British forces are to the word. It's pretty impressive, just a snapshot of the three of you here in key regions of the world where we are committed to doing our best and making a difference.
"It's interesting with Remembrance to have this time to think about all of the roles you play that the British Armed Forces are committed to."
The Duke of Cambridge joked with senior PE teacher Damon Bell about his £ 40million drug bankruptcy while serving with HMS Iron Duke in 2008.
The Navy fitness trainer described how the crew aboard HMS Montrose had kept their spirits up after being banned from shore leave because of Covid-19 in the Gulf.
And while patrolling the straights of Hormuz, the frigate intercepted and confiscated more than 450 kg of methamphetamine from smugglers last month.
He said, "Only half of what you got on Iron Duke, but still very good."
Prince William, who flew a Lynx helicopter in the Caribbean 14 years ago to hunt down smugglers with 40 million pounds of cocaine, said, "I didn't mean to mention this, but I'm glad it's still being talked about."
The crew, who are participating in Operation Kipion to ensure the Gulf is safe for shipping, held a Memorial Day parade on the flight deck on Sunday and held regular events on board to maintain morale and promote mental health.
The Queen, Prince Charles and Prime Minister Boris Johnson spearheaded politicians and kings who paid their respects to Britain's war dead at the cenotaph on Sunday
Strict social distancing was in place to allow the ceremony to take place on Sunday despite the threat of the coronavirus. Pictured: The Duchess of Cornwall and Duchess of Cambridge kept their distance as they watched the memorial services on Sunday
The Earl of Wessex, Prince Edward, also laid a wreath at Sunday services – an annual tradition for several members of the royal family
William said, “I remember getting bribed on the Iron Duke by people like you, Damon. The PT on deck was always a fun afternoon. I think after a series of locks I may need your PT skills to get back in shape.
Damon replied, "Always at the end of a Zoom call, sir, whenever you're ready."
Corporal Jiwan Kumar Thapa of the Queen's Gurkha Signals, who spent three months on Operation Tangham to train local forces against al-Shabaab extremists in Somalia, described how his father and grandfather in Gurkha regiments for Britain's Amy had served.
William said, “You have a very proud history. We are very grateful for all the hard work and wonderful history we had with the Gurkhas. They have a fearsome reputation around the world. & # 39;
Flight Sergeant Gemma Thomson of RAF Wyton spoke from her base in Qatar, where the British are being deployed to attack Daesh for Operation Shader.
The mother of two, whose eldest was born on Memorial Day six years ago, described why the annual ceremony was so important.
William added, "Being born on Remembrance Sunday is a very special birthday," to which Gemma replied, "It makes memories a little special."
She replied, “It is so much more than just physical sacrifices, but also small sacrifices that people continue to make. Aside from my son, memory is a very important time.
“The memory is so much bigger than myself, that's something I articulate to my son when I let him lay a wreath on his birthday. It is important to know that there are things that are much bigger than you. & # 39;
She went on to say that more is being done in the armed forces to support the mental health of soldiers and women.
"There's a culture change and less of a stigma," she added.
The Duke of Cambridge also asked about Gemma's six years of learning to lay a wreath on his birthday and the party that followed.
“I have to find the balance between partying and wreath-laying. pretty solemn, pretty chaotic, ”he said.
After Gemma had described how much cake her son was eating, the heir to the throne replied: “Then the sugar sets in and then there is chaos.
Gemma replied, "Oh you know"
Prince William, the father of George, seven, Charlotte, five and two year old Louis, nodded and smiled and said, "Yes, I know".
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