There he is! Prince Harry stepped out for an official appearance for the first time since confirming his romance with Suits star Meghan Markle. The royal, 32, was in attendance — sans girlfriend — at a Thursday, November 10, ceremony honoring British military lives lost in battle.
Harry, who served two tours in Afghanistan during his decade-spanning service in the British Army, and his grandfather Prince Philip, who was a naval officer during WWII, paid their respects to the U.K.’s veterans at the Field of Remembrance at Westminster Abbey.
They both laid a Cross of Remembrance, in front of two wooden crosses from the Graves of Unknown British Soldiers from the First and Second World Wars. “The Last Post” — a bugle call — was played, followed by two minutes of silence. After the silence, Harry and Philip met veterans from past and more recent conflicts.
The event is Harry’s first since he publicly acknowledged his romance with Markle, 35. Days earlier, the handsome redhead passionately defended his relationship with the actress in a statement.
“The past week has seen a line crossed,” read the one-page letter released by Harry’s communications secretary, Jason Knauf, on Tuesday, November 8. “His girlfriend, Meghan Markle, has been subject to a wave of abuse and harassment. Some of this has been very public — the smear on the front page of a national newspaper; the racial undertones of comment pieces; and the outright sexism and racism of social media trolls and web article comments.”
The statement continued, “Prince Harry is worried about Ms. Markle’s safety and is deeply disappointed that he has not been able to protect her. It is not right that a few months into a relationship with him that Ms. Markle should be subjected to such a storm. He knows commentators will say this is ‘the price she has to pay’ and that ‘this is all part of the game.’ He strongly disagrees. This is not a game — it is her life and his.”
Harry and Markle (who was previously wed to film producer Trevor Engelson from 2011 to 2013) began dating in June. Last month, Us Weekly confirmed that Harry introduced the actress and philanthropist to his father, Prince Charles.
“Harry loves that she is so into philanthropy,” an insider previously told Us of the pair. “One of the first things they spoke about was her shelter dogs. He loves that she’s so caring.”
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