Prince Harry opens Invictus Games 2016 (updated)

Prince Harry opens Invictus Games 2016 (updated)

The opening ceremony for the Invictus Games 2016 in Orlando was last night. Did you watch? Prince Harry was there, of course, and gave a very moving speech about how being a Prince allowed him to help veterans, and the mental illnesses and challenges that people face. First Lady Michelle Obama was also there and gave a speech as well. Former President George W. Bush was there, as well as former First Lady Laura Bush (they are both honorary chairs of the Games). James Blunt performed, and Morgan Freeman played a role in the ceremony as well.

Prince Harry Invictus Games opening ceremony speech

Here’s a transcript of Harry’s speech. I liked the line, “But what I learned through serving was that the extraordinary privileges of being a Prince gave me an extraordinary opportunity to help my military family”, and that he included mental illnesses and challenges not only that veterans face but civilians as well.

    “I cannot tell you how proud and excited I am to open the second Invictus games here in America.
    “I’m a long way from London tonight. But when I look out and I see so many familiar faces, servicemen and women, their friends and their families and all the people who have got them here – I feel like I’m at home.
    “I spent 10 years in the British Army and I was deployed to Afghanistan twice. I served alongside soldiers from all over the world. I saw the sacrifices you and your families made to serve your nations. I learned about the importance of teamwork and camaraderie in a way that only military service can teach you. And when I travelled back from the battlefield on a plane carrying the body of a Danish soldier and three young Brits, fighting for their lives, I began to understand the real, permanent cost of war.
    “I joined the Army because, for a long time, I just wanted to be one of the guys. But what I learned through serving was that the extraordinary privileges of being a Prince gave me an extraordinary opportunity to help my military family. That’s why I had to create the Invictus Games – to build a platform for all those who have served to prove to the world what they have to offer.
    “Over the next four days, you will see things that in years past just wouldn’t have been possible. You will see people who by rights should have died on the battlefield – but instead they are going for gold on the track or in the pool. You will be inspired, you will be moved, and I promise you will be entertained.
    “While I have your attention, though, I want to briefly speak about an issue that for far too many of you is shrouded in shame and fear. An issue that is just as important for many of you watching at home as it is for those of you in this stadium tonight.
    “It is not just physical injuries that our Invictus competitors have overcome. Every single one of them will have confronted tremendous emotional and mental challenges. When we give a standing ovation to the competitor with the missing limbs, let’s also cheer our hearts out for the man who overcame anxiety so severe he couldn’t leave his house. Let’s cheer for the woman who fought through post-traumatic stress and let’s celebrate the soldier who was brave enough to get help for his depression.
    “Over the next four days you will get to know these amazing competitors. They weren’t too tough to admit that they struggled with their mental health, and they weren’t too tough to get the help they needed.
    “To those of you watching at home and who are suffering from mental illness in silence – whether a veteran or a civilian, a mum or a dad, a teenager or a grandparent – I hope you see the bravery of our Invictus champions who have confronted invisible injuries, and I hope you are inspired to ask for the help that you need.
    “To end, can I just say thank you to all of you guys. You are fierce competitors. You are role models that any parent would be proud to have their children follow. You’ve made me a better person. You are about to inspire the world and I’m proud to call you my friends.
    “So, let’s put on a hell of a show in memory of all of our fallen comrades who didn’t make it back.
    “We are Invictus!”

[royal.uk]

Here’s a video of Harry’s and Michelle’s speeches:

I watched the opening ceremony and I think it was really lovely that they included veterans sharing their personal stories in the opening ceremony – and how they included the military families as well – but someone should have told Israel Del Toro not to drop the f-bomb on live TV.

Here’s a video of the closing fireworks:

UPDATE: Harry and FLOTUS were on GMA this morning, here’s a clip of them talking about Harry interacting with George. FLOTUS said: “The most precious thing, if you haven’t already fallen in love with him, is to see him with his nephew.”

Too bad we will never, ever see Harry with George in this way because William and Kate are so paranoid “protective” of their “privacy”.

112 thoughts on “Prince Harry opens Invictus Games 2016 (updated)

  1. I didn’t watch the ceremony live but I hear the speech from Harry (like I said on other comment : great speech, with emotion : make this speech in live : congratulation).
    Good speech from Mrs Obama too: she is a good speaker!! I love the sobriety of what she wears : the focus is on the cause, not the clothes.
    Beautiful ceremony from what I see, I am happy that IG helps people (wounded people and their families) and that Harry get recognition for his work. And it is good to give the opportunity to veterans to tell their stories.

    And anyone an video about Morgan Freeman about IG? I search… I love him, one of my favourite actors! And my grandfather has the same shirt that him! lol

    1. That’s the thing about Michelle. You focus on the cause because she actually has something worthwhile to say about it. She actually knows what she’s talking about. She shows a genuine interest about her causes. She has substance. So who cares about what she’s wearing? This may be saying much, but I’d say that even if she wore a paper bag, it wouldn’t be the focus because she brings it all back to the cause.

      1. Even when she wears something some fashionable, people are able to talk about it without forgetting the main subject. This is how it’s done.

      2. Take note Kate, you can so do this too, all you need is just care enough about the cause you say you’re behind and you’ll soon find yourself interest and investment you’ve put into it will show. 5 years in, come on Kate, you can do this.

        1. That’s the thing: she can’t. She is not born/built to be that way. The BRF, the tabloids, the crazy fans…they all tried selling us the miracle of the modern, Royal family thanks to Kate Middleton…. That miracle didn’t happen. Five years (+engagemt/girlfriend years) we are still waiting for that spark, that little something… It won’t happen. These two (and especially Kate!) are bland as bland can be. Period.

          Harry, on the other hand, is the one! God bless him!

    2. It’s interesting that Harry gets more recognition from the American press for his work than the British, Kate lifts a finger and they’re praising her and hailing her and William for being the loudest voices when Harry’s been doing work in a field for more years. Seriously the Cambridges only starting doing work about mental health late last year, Harry’s been involved since the North Pole trek and 2 years before the first Invictus Games (when Cambridges made their baby announcement that hijacked the headlines – I seriously think they could have kept it hidden for a few days the way they managed to do their ski trip or the France trip had it not been for the pictures, Kate was already living by her mom and Will hunting with friends, both her and Will were not in London, she managed to get dental work and all but one of her baby scans visits without getting papparrazi knowing so they could have at least tried and if word leaked then confirmed it but tried to let Harry have his moment. Just saying. Sorry)

      1. I agree Gie, it’s so annoying that the press tends to focus more on Kate’s hairdo or fashion choices then the important work that Harry is doing.

        1. Finally Lauri, Piers to the rescue!

          http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3583260/PIERS-MORGAN-Good-King-Henry-Harry-make-Sorry-William.html

          “He also has a strong work ethic and ‘can-do’ attitude… Never has this attitude been more visible than in the last few days as he’s launched the Invictus Games, a globally watched charity event for wounded soldiers that’s his creation and one he drives with ferocious creativity and determination.

          [Harry] seems to revel in being the only ‘real’ royal out there. His interviews, and there have been numerous ones to promote Invictus in the last few days, are suffused with wit, passion, spontaneity and openness.

          He also connects with people in a way I haven’t seen since Diana was strutting her stuff on the world stage.

          Witness the way he hugged that brave little amputee Rio at the Games last night. Or the smacker he planted on jubilant road cyclist Katie Kuiper whose face was badly disfigured when she was shot in the head.

          You can’t teach that kind of instinctive thing, and William would be incapable of it.

          Harry seems just as at ease when joshing around with presidents as he does mixing it up with ordinary people.”

  2. Wow!
    Thanks for posting Harry’s speech KMR, I’m tearing up as I write this. We’ve had the edited highlight of Harry’s speech on the news here only, hopefully more will be play later.
    A special mention has to be about the reference to PTSD. It’s good to remind people that wounds are not only visible but there are the invisible wounds too.

    Well done Sir!

    (I think what Harry has started here is down to him as a person, it’s not just about his being a prince.)

  3. Thanks for this KMR. Total respect to Harry and his team for putting in the hard yards to make Invictus happen not once, but twice, with future plans in place. I enjoyed his speech and its heartfelt sentiments.

    Privilege can never be ‘earned’; the work Harry does is a direct result of opportunities given to him through privilege rather than merit. The best he can do is to acknowledge his fortunate circumstances and vow to do his best to champion veterans which I think he is doing with great sincerity and honesty.

    How sad that none of his family could attend; that would have been a generous act of support to both Harry and the cause.

  4. What an amazing cause this is! “For those of you who are watching at home and who are suffering from a mental illness in silence – whether a veteran or civilian – I hope you see the bravery of our of our invictus champions, and I hope you are inspired to ask for the help you need.” This made me cry as it makes me fill a little less lonely with my own mental illness, thank you harry for speaking about this. I really hope these games are a huge success, god bless the wounded veterans taking part and god bless those that never came home, they are the best of humanity and I hugely appreciate them.

          1. Well another too – this is what Harry just seems so good at – making people believe he genuinely cares about the issues and the people he is trying to support. Let’s hope he made you and many others feel a little less isolated.

  5. I’m glad Harry addressed the invisible wounds that soldiers bring home with them and the importance of seeking treatment, and I hope that his message will carry weight with the higher-ups who determine how returning soldiers are served. I was reminded of a shocking news article from last fall revealing that U.S. soldiers who seek help for mental illness may find themselves discharged from the army for “misconduct.” The article begins, “The U.S. Army has kicked out more than 22,000 soldiers since 2009 for ‘misconduct,’ after they returned from Iraq and Afghanistan and were diagnosed with mental health disorders and traumatic brain injuries. That means many of those soldiers are not receiving the crucial treatment or retirement and health care benefits they would have received with an honorable discharge.”. Full article here: http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2015/10/28/452652731/thousands-of-soldiers-with-mental-health-disorders-kicked-out-for-misconduct

    1. That’s an incredible article, Constance. I wonder, if you have time, you might like to write to Prince Harry and FLOTUS in a combined letter, acknowledging the Invictus Games and pointing out the problems. They may be just the right people to help.

    2. I think you should definitely write Harry, FLOTUS, maybe GWB and Laura and Dr Biden as all of these people are getting together to talk about these issues.

      Heck we should all do a massive letter writing campaign!

      1. I think a massive letter writing campaign is in order. To the peoplel Ellie listed, as well as each Senator and Congressman who represents the letter writer. THank you Constance. Your link to the article helped us all realize how very much needs to be done.

  6. Harry is a prince. But if he is not genuinely humble,sincere & hardworking nobody will be looking at him or helping his causes. He doesn’t take his privilege for granted, truly cares about others & wants to help them. He clearly doesn’t want to go down te path that W+K has taken. Not rushing into marriage & taking his time to find the right lady who believes in what he believes. The Queen should award him a dukedom ‘cos he deserves it, not ‘cos he’s getting married. Duke of Clarence hasn’t been used or maybe Duke of Kensington? Perhaps this might open William’s eyes not to mess with Harry anymore & his standard of diligence is way above William’s. & not only that people LOVE HARRY MORE THAN WILLIAM.

  7. Oh Harry.. every time I hear you talk, I love you just that much more. I loved the part where he talked about the impact of flying back with the bodies of soldiers and other injured soldiers and how it humbled him. Can you imagine Will and Kate? They’d probably be all “Me? Fly with a dead person? Not happening.”

    And I love how he tied it together with mental health. He’s right. It’s not just about the physical injuries. There are mental injuries too. And unfortunately because you can’t see it, people just assume that you’re ok. And him bringing that to the forefront is awesome. PTSD is very real. I’ve seen it at work. I’ve seen it with my boyfriend. I work in an environment where I could have PTSD. There is nothing wrong with admitting you need help. But in this field, it’s hard because there’s still the stigma that you’re “weak” if you ask for help. But, how is it different from seeing a doctor if you break your arm? What about if you have cancer? You seek out help and no one would think it was wrong. So why not mental health? PTSD is there, as well as a wide range of other mental health issues, and you shouldn’t be looked at any differently because you asked for help. I’m very happy to see Harry highlight it to help end the stigma. I’m also happy that he included the families because it affects them just as much as it affects the soldiers.

    Good on Harry. What started out as a passion to help his fellow vets has turned into something more. He tries to reach everyone and relate to them as best he can. Like Jen said, he’s made these games happen twice now and there are already plans in the works for a 3rd one. I don’t think he’s going to stop.

    What have Kate and William done? They’re “keen” on *insert issue*? Um.. all talk and no game. The more Harry does, the more it shows just how lazy and pathetic the duo are. Privilege brings opportunities that some people just can’t get. And what you do with those opportunities show what kind of person you are. Harry’s just got it in spades. He knows he has privileges and opportunities that most people don’t (and won’t ever) get and he doesn’t rub it in your face. He acknowledges it and uses it to his advantage to help others. I can’t wait until next September now when the games are in Toronto. You can bet your butt that I’ll be there, even if it means taking time off work. I’m proud that it’s coming to my city. To be honest, I’m hoping to volunteer and will be throwing my name into the mix when the volunteer applications come out. Fingers crossed I get it!

    1. Agree with you : I love the announcements from KP for Kate and Will everyday of IG in order to not forget about these 2.

      “Heads Together is TRH’s ambitious new campaign to end stigma on mental health, and the biggest project they have undertaken together to date”
      -> Is it not the only project together?
      -> K and W have not undertaken a project.

  8. My God Harry is looking more and more like an international statesman. Already his legacy is in place with Sentebale expanding & Invictus being of such a huge international profile. A man, a son, a grandson and a prince to be so proud of.

    Meanwhile in deepest, darkest Norfolk an entitled, shallow couple with all the depth of a paddling pool, rearrange nude pumps from lightest to darkest shades, organise multiple navy suits and flip through the Royal holiday brochure wondering where they can tour with the Royal Travel Agent at someone else’s expense.

    I always wondered why Princess Anne had such an affection for Harry over William. I guess she could see these unique qualities long before they became so apparent to us all. Playboy Prince my arse.

    1. Perfection! I didn’t realize Anne had affection for Harry over William. I had not read or heard this about her relationship with her nephews. I does not surprise me. It appears hard working Anne is also a good judge of character.

      1. ** Blushes ** Thank you for your lovely comments. ^^
        I believe Princess Anne took a real shine to Harry when he was learning to ride. Said his seat was so good with work he could be an Olympian. I’m also led to believe that when Diana died Princess Anne used a lot of distraction technique with Harry……long walks to tire him out. Lot of horse & fresh air. I know someone who has worked in land mgmt at Gatcombe Park. PA does her own interviewing for her staff. He described Gatcombe as like an upper class commune……dogs, horses, grooms, staff, children and grand children all living together very happily in the grounds. PA firm but fair. Potty mouth like her Dad but immense work ethic and intelligence. Made no secret of her preference for one of her nephews and non to complimentary about Chutney either.

        1. Because the Princess Royal is the Colonel of the Blues and Royals (Harry was a Captain), she pinned his Operational Service Medal (OSM) for Afghanistan on his uniform. There’s a nice photo in this article http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/news/1126059/Hero-Prince-to-receive-medal.html

          Prince Charles and William were there as well.

          I have met Princess Anne – she definitely can be rather abrupt and no-nonsense, but since I met her at a horse event, we actually talked for a few minutes. She was a good sport, as the horse I was holding decided to snort in her ear. I was embarrassed as heck, but she just laughed and gave the mare a good pat.

          1. I’m sure I’ve mentioned this before but my Dad had to do a presentation for her. Total devotion for life now. He adores her. He said she’s in complete command of her brief, really intelligent, astute and so knowledgable about so much. One day it’s telecommunications and satellites, the next day a cardio thoracic operating theatre, the next Citizen’s Advice Bureau. And she absolutely knows her stuff about them all. No fluff or platitudes, she gets down to the nitty gritty of each issue like she’s worked in it all her life. My Dad always calls her the best King this country never had……maybe that’s why she shares such an affinity with Harry?

          2. Mrs. BBV, what a lovely story you shared about your father and Princess Anne. What a wonderful opportunity he had to meet such an intelligent woman. Birdy is right. What in goodness name would Kate and Anne have to discuss if they were alone in a room together?!

  9. Oh God, wonderful. I didn’t watch the ceremony but Harry speech was very moving and I read it twice. I loved he said: “You’ve made me a better person. You are about to inspire the world and I’m proud to call you my friends.” The last picture was amazing. Yes Harry, I AM very proud of you.

  10. A wonderful speech by Prince Harry, his public speaking acumen has grown by leaps and bounds over the last couple of years.
    Best part of what he said, though? It came from the heart and you know he meant every word.

  11. His speech was tremendously eloquent. I wonder who wrote it, though I don’t doubt the sentiment. He covered all the bases and used personal experience to legitimise it. So well done.

    “So, let’s put on a hell of a show in memory of all of our fallen comrades who didn’t make it back.”
    This brought me to tears. He forgot no one.

    I never thought I’d be moved by a speech from a royal. He, indeed, is his mother’s and father’s son.

    (I can’t help but snicker at the thought of Willy’s reaction.)

  12. Harry has done so much and deserves to be recognized for his efforts. I am hoping W and K do nothing to steal his thunder! But then, I ask, how can it be stolen? The impact he has made, and the impact of all the competitors and their loved ones, is now officially in our hearts and minds to stay.

    He spoke so beautifully! And recognizes the challenges the people who have served and have been wounded (physically or emotionally) have endured and will battle hence forth.

    I loved the nod he gave to those who have PTSD. Those who face challenges from depression and anxiety — as well as those who have been wounded physically. He truly understands and his heart and his efforts will always be with them.

    Not a day should go by that any of us should forget the sacrifices so many have made. My mom has a friend whose son came home severely shell-shocked from duty in Iraq. He was not able to get the help he needed from the Vets Hospital and sadly, passed away after being struck by a car when he was crossing a road near his apartment. He was placed on life support, but his family made the decision to take him off and they donated the organs that they could to help others in need. Not a day goes by that someone doesn’t mention him with great affection and awe. As a teenager, he must have had a forewarning that he would become an organ donor, for he told his mother that if anything ever happened to him and his cause was lost, that she must make sure his organs would be donated to assist others. She continues to do what she can for the Organ Donor Network here in NY — in memory of her son. If he were alive today, Ia m sure he’d be down in Orlando cheering on all the competitors.

    Let’s all cheer them, too. They deserve our applause and our respect! Not only during the games, but on every other day, too.

  13. I was sincerely moved by his speech. I’m immensely proud to see Harry in such an international setting, meeting with presidents, prime ministers and former presidents of important nations and holding his own. Harry has finally found his path and is doing something he loves. He is putting his heart and souls into his charity and we actually see results unlike another prince.

  14. Harry as always is a class act. Sincere, compassionate, and heart felt speech. When he gives a speech you hear and see the passion in every word. Not keen and shallow like the Cambridge duo. I hope they do not try to upstage Harry this week. I wouldn’t put it past them. Yet how can they upstage Harry they would have to work hard and come off as compassionate people. This is Harry’s time to shine. He has grown into an amazing man. His mother would be truly proud of the man he has become. As well as the rest of BRF should be proud of him. He embodies duty over self.

  15. I got tears in my eyes just reading the speech. No way I can watch him speaking. I hope they are getting lots of people in Orlando. If I was in Florida, I would attend for sure. Isn’t it nice to see the Bush’s, FLOTUS and Harry working together? Harry is my new hero.

  16. Didn’t get to watch it live because I don’t have ESPN, but thank you so much for posting the video of his speech. I’m so very proud of the man Harry has become. He seriously does not have to worry about whether or not he’s made his mother proud.

    I’m also proud of Michelle Obama, George and Laura Bush (never thought I’d say that) and the crowds that showed up to support these soldiers in their games.

    The comment about George questioning why Harry was being so quiet was wonderful. I do hope he’s getting more time with George and Charlotte because they’ve been at KP a bit. Harry was actually embarrassed and that just made him more human.

    On another note, I’m sure there were telepromters, but kudos to Harry for pulling off that speech without pieces of paper in front of him. It was from his heart so I’m sure a lot of it was memorized.

    I’m going to say it again #KINGHENRYIX

    1. You beat me to it Lisa – I’m not sure there were teleprompters both Harry and FLOTUS seemed to be talking without any notes or prompts. The fact that both of them stumbled just slightly suggests we are right on that. And I think Harry has been taking lessons about speaking more slowly and clearly, because whilst still not perfect the improvement from a year ago is very noticeable. He listened to criticism and worked to improve – can’t ask for more than that.

      1. There are teleprompters : we see them on the video about the speeches.
        Personally as French, I think that he speaks clearly (even if there is not perfect) : I have all understand without difficulties!
        It is pleasant for my ears : with Kate, I don’t hear her because she has not a loud voice or I don’t understand the words… I don”t say that to denigrate her, just to give my opinion of non English speaker.
        (And for William, I don’t listen to him)

      2. Teleprompter or not, they all spoke well. I couldn’t imagine speaking in front of an audience that big. Major kudos to them!

      1. No, it’s not a problem. I was just pointing out that Harry did incredibly well when usually in the past when we’ve seen him speaking there are pages of notes in front of him. He may have glanced at the teleprompter to see where he was, but he wasn’t glued to it. Some people are incredibly obvious when they are reading cue cards or a teleprompter.

        I was just complimenting him.

        1. Notes are really distracting for those watching. While I noticed he was reading his speech yesterday, I agree it was a major improvement. And as you said above he knows what he’s talking about and speaks from the heart, that’s the most important to make your message come across.

    2. When Harry started speaking it was pretty clear to me he was reading from a teleprompter, he kept staring down a lot. Not that it matters though. He seems to get specially nervous when in front of big crowds, but I really admire him for not letting that frighten him – he just goes ahead and do what has to be done.

    3. +1000

      Especially for some who’s terrified of giving speeches. It’s actually amazing that he’s been able to carry this so well and host and meet so many people, hold conversations and charm them all, Presidents, former presidents and Prime ministers, First Ladys, as well as organisers, Invictus Games competitors and their families and interviewers without any one else carrying the weight of it all with him, the conversations, representing HM, the expectation, the fanfare, of cause he has his team, but they’re not exactly engaging in and carrying the conversations with the people Harry’s there to meet or foreign dignitaries where he goes. It must actually be exhausting. Well done to him. He’s been going since Canada and hasn’t failed to bring warmth and genuinely connect with people.

  17. Bravissimo Harry! That’s a future King, right there! Although he may be destined to never be King but in my heart, as well as so many others, he is the one who deserves to be King. Norfolk may disappear from the map, but history will note Invictus and Sentebale, and people will remember what he has done for them.

    Quoting Diana, “I’d like to be a queen of people’s hearts, in people’s hearts”.

    Forget about keeping mommy’s memory alive by decorating missus with big blue and mommy’s tiara. This is how people will recall Diana and her legacy.

  18. For the first time in years, I was sorry I don’t have cable television. I would have liked to watch the Games. Hopefully some bits will get posted on you tube.

    I liked a quote from George Bush – he recommended they drop the “D” off PTSD. He said “It’s not a disorder. It’s an injury.” I wholeheartedly agree. I had a neighbor growing up who came back from Vietnam a totally different person. They really didn’t know about the effects of PTS then, and it ruined his life (divorces, heavy drinking, etc.)

    The BRF (with a few exceptions) must be so incredibly proud of Harry and what he is achieving.

    1. I think HM is proud of him – to do that little video means she knows he is special. I remember somewhere recently she said she now appreciated Diana, and I think it is in seeing the very best of her in Harry.

    2. I think George Bush is an idiot. It is on the surface an injury but that doesn’t begin to describe how it becomes a mental health issue. I can describe the deep cut on my finger as an injury. People around can argue, “Oh it’s just an injury” and not understand how primally devastating it is mentally and emotionally. He inadvertently diminishes the crumbling, agony and annihilation.

      It’s a wound, not an injury. Big difference.

      Still, kudos to him for making a statement that might make a difference in the level of awareness.

      1. Bush was quite correct in using “Injury” vs. “wound” and i had to double check several times to be certain as we’re not speaking strictly medical and literal in that sense.

        All wounds are injuries, but not all injuries are wounds sort of situation.
        A wound is visible and characterized as a gash or torn area. An injury can be unseen. A wound is simply a visible injury.
        Examples of unseen injuries… Contusion, disfigurement, suffering, trauma, etc…
        All fall under as Injuries.

        Sorry for my unsolicited 2 cents.

        1. To add. “Wounded Warriors” and similar phrases in a colloquial sense have distorted the true meaning so it rolls off the tongue. So, that might have lead to the confusion.

          For intents and purposes of the speech and phrase in question everything was more than fine imo.

          Side point to my side point. Coloquialisms are not my strong suit so it’s always a chance to learn 🙂

        2. These days in regards to mental health they have dropped ‘disorder’ and now it is just post traumatic stress, and for these men and women it IS an injury brought on by combat whatever and wherever it may be. Bush was entirely correct when he said injury, and I’m glad he and Laura are so involved. They fronted money to help the IG Foundation out from what I have heard. And I’m glad they did that symposium. Mental health is so important not just for vets but everyone. It’s great to hear people are tackling this as well as the rehab and the like for physical injuries. The more voices are heard the more people will hear it!

        3. “not all injuries are wounds”

          Well, that’s pretty literal. I think this is more complicated/multi-dimensional than that but I do acknowledge your point.

        4. Maven
          I think what is important here is Bush’s words were not meant to diminish the severe impact war and related trauma can have on the mind. And that was made clear in the context of his speech.

          It is a very complicated issue though, I agree. And it’s not something anyone could fully cover to everyone’s satisfaction in ceremony speeches here and there. Thank you for seeing my point. I hope i’ve seen yours as you’ve meant it 🙂

  19. In Royal News:

    1. William, the future King, is no where to be seen

    2. Kate visits NPG to view pictures of herself in a fashion magazine!

    3. Meanwhile, Harry, creates a game for veterans that many countries participate in. He does it from scratch and spends all week promoting it. He is fully involved and actually present, showing how much he cares about this cause he created! He gives speeches and lets the world a little in on his life. He is charismatic and intelligent.

    Conclusion: It is obvious Harry is the only one who really gets what service means. William and Kate should be ashamed.

    Seriously though, looking at KP Twitter shows what a night and day difference there is. William is no where on it. Harry is all over it with the IG and really shows his involvement. Then Kate is randomly in there with her fluff engagements. What a night and day difference. It really does just show how Harry is the only serious one. I am a true fan now 🙂

    1. +1
      I’m the same age as Diana and boy she must be such a proud mummy up there on her little cloud. What an amazing boy, Diana brought something new and special to the BRF and Harry has that magic in spades.

  20. If you guys want to read something else, go to youtube and search for Invictus Games Choir. They put it together in 6 weeks and they’re all wounded vets. I was blubbering my eyes out watching it. I wasn’t able to watch last night but I’m dying to see their song and how they did!

    1. There were lots of used tissues next to me after I watched this! But surely there is a second part following them closer to the opening ceremony?

      1. It may not be on youtube very long – the BBC has a habit of taking them down for copyright infringement. As far as I could tell, they have not televised part two yet. It was great, wasn’t it?

          1. From what I read, it will be the last two weeks of rehearsal, traveling to Orlando and the Games. The Internet rumor mill is never wrong 😉

            By the way, I haven’t seen any mention or video of how they did. Those who watched it, how was it? Tell me, tell me…inquiring minds have to know.

    2. I recorded Invictus games Choir and I have just watched it.What an amazing programme.The stories the vets told about their service and their injuries were heartbreaking.Kudos to Gareth Malone and kudos to these amazing vets. I really hope more people get to watch this programme.

    1. Thank you for sharing this clip. I wouldn’t have come across it otherwise. Yes, Harry and his family should be extremely proud. Lazy Willy should be ashamed of himself. Useless.

  21. I just read that 2 family members of each competitor receive free transportation to and from the airport/sports complex/hotel/Disney Parks, lodging and meals, hospitality suite (free drinks and snacks), shirts/backpacks etc., free admission to all the events plus a four day pass to Disney World.

    How incredible! I’m sure many of the families couldn’t have afforded to come otherwise. Basically all they needed to buy was plane tickets. What an amazing thing to do! I’m so grateful that the families are being treated “royally”. They deserve a lot of credit, too.

    1. The sacrifices of the families are often overlooked. This is wonderful is was built into the events.

      I truly admire all Invictus games hopes to accomplish. It goes from many angles. 1 giant spectacular event, but all those little touches that goes beyond the vets. Extremely thoughtful.

    2. Yup! I was reading the IG Toronto site. They pay for everything for 2 family members except airfare. And airfare is the responsibility of the home country of the athlete.

    3. Harry says this is why they chose Orlando–to focus on the family as a unit and those who have gone through the struggle with the veterans and to honor them by giving them a wonderful time as a family, as lots of them have wives, husbands, kids.

      Disney really stepped up but they are big on supporting veterans so I’m not surprised they’ve been doing this. Shades of Green ,a military only resort at WDW, is being used for the athletes. (I assume Harry’s staying somewhere a bit cushier?)

      1. Indeed, this is most generous. The families of those who serve sacrifice, too. When their loved one is away and once the loved one returns. Helping a combat veteran readjust to life after war is not easy. And, when there are physical and emotional wounds the family suffers, too.

        To give the families of the competitors a chance to cheer them on in person is a true gift. I am more and more impressed by how everyone was planned and implemented.

        A standing ovation to all who worked so hard and who will continue to grown this amazing challenge.

        I’m still waiting to hear from Rhiannon. I hope she has amazing news! I’ve not read this whole post yet. Fingers crossed for our future Duchess!

  22. Greetings everyone,

    Prince Harry –

    A good kind man, trying to do something good in this world – for someone OTHER than himself.

    A basket full of happiness to you all, a candle to light your way – and all the love your heart can hold.

    The Wild Rose

  23. I am so verklempt watching Harry. How can you be proud of someone you don’t even know? What a leader. His speech left me in tears. The photos of him and the joy in his face and in the faces of the competitors says it all. This changes lives.

  24. oh Harry..is this guy for real??
    I mean, did he have someone wrote his speech or what, I mean, its so genuine(for me). The part where he said he just wanted to be one of the guys when he joined the army, it just felt real to me. It got me wondering, is this the same Harry that got caught smoking pots and got in media frenzy for the nazi thingy??
    If he did grow out of them all and be the man that he is today, well, can’t he be the King please.

  25. Greetings Everyone,

    Prince Harry – well everything from all of those who have commented here (and to those secretly reading it and probably fuming)

    This is how it is said and done. With a true heart, a clear sense of purpose, with the 4 pillars

    1. Duty
    2. Service
    3. Loyalty
    4. Faith – not only personal, in the man/woman beside them having their back and faith in themselves.

    Harry spoke from the heart. With the experiences he had, he shared, he felt, he understood and that is all we can ever ask.

    I cried when I was able to actually hear and read the speech he gave. Straight from the heart and there is never any shame in tears.

    My heart smiled and it just reaffirmed my own belief yet again, that acts of kindness and charity that are quietly made, quietly achieved and held in the heart of the “giver” to be passed on like Prince Harry has (especially on the World stage) is the step of someone who knows his true calling.

    Everyone who is involved in the Invictus Games (whether they be participants, volunteers, families, children, First Lady, Prince or spectators) are all invested in this moment in time.

    We should cherish it, celebrate it, and be so thankful that Harry is the one who believed in those he served alongside, saw wounded, the mental anguish and effects of it and was able to get this absolutely amazing idea come to fruition.

    Good on him, bless him for just being himself, for believing in those service men and women – for just doing what he can.

    The Princess Royal – would be so proud of him, of that I have no doubt, having met her when she was in New Zealand many years ago. Her Majesty, Prince Philip, and Sophie Wessex – would be genuinely proud as well.

    From what I have managed to see (connection not stable as usual) and read the comments that you have posted, it is obvious that this is one Prince we can agree on – has given his all.

    I have to head off again but just wanted to add my good thoughts and thanks KMR for your wonderful work.

    Prince Harry – no doubt in my mind A King and would be worthy of being one. By far – a great King and I live in hope.

    Please keep up with your wonderful comments and thanks for brightening my day.

    Will check in again when I have my next down time in a couple of days. Have a container to get unloaded and dispersed so it may be a little while.

    A basket full of happiness to you all, with all the love your hearts can hold.

    The Wild Rose

    1. Much love to you……and I love the fact that you’ve identified that we all, from our many corners of the world, are so proud of Harry. He might well have had a shaky start but my goodness he’s found ‘himself’.

    2. Wildrose
      Your comment made me tear up a little!

      Maybe it’s also just an emotional thread. In a really good way.
      How can anyone not see Harry and his actions here and elsewhere and not see he’s pouring heart into these things. I think the senior royals are all extremely impressed with Harry as a prince and as family.
      Be well!

  26. Not a stone has been left un-turned. The Invictus Games were planned perfectly!
    Prince Harry has been truly magnificent in his ability to honor those who served and sacrificed greatly. Their loved ones, too.
    I’m more and more impressed by him. He has it rings around his brother! I hope he is being appreciated by the powers that be. I can only imagine how proud Diana would be and how proud Charles is of the second son!!! Harry, you are first with us! And, with Rhiannon, who must be so very excited. I hope she has met PH and cannot wait to hear what she has to tell us!

  27. Working with Mary Elizabeth. Trying to post a new comment and her comment appeared with my name. So, I deleted it and just re-commented. Just wanted to ask, why the little boxes in front of our names sometimes change color/design. Sometimes, the box is blue in front of my name, but I also noticed it can be pink/red of late What is that all about, KMR, please? Thanks.

    1. Oh Wow. Long, long overdue that this question was posed in the press. I imagine some very sour faces in Amner tonight. William doesn’t have it in him to be thrilled for Harry’s success. I don’t think Harry would want to be King either but if required he would do it with immense grace and devotion to duty and his people.

      1. Best. Article. Ever.

        And so about time! Well done Piers.

        I totally agree, Harry would suck it up and just get on with it and actually make something good of it.

    2. Wow, thanks for the link. It is about time someone wrote that. And it was a very good piece! William is dull and awkward in interviews. I can’t believe how Harry has matured and grown. I am glad someone is finally writing about how Harry should be King. William must be furious

      1. What I love is reading about the commentaries that we can class in categories :
        – Harry = Good King : genuine, smiling,
        – Agree but they are different because William is born to be King and Harry to be the spare -> so almost everybody is OK to say that he is akward (good orthographe or not for this word? I have a bug….), cold…
        – Not Harry to be King because he doesn’t want to be King, he will not be the same

        -> in all these sentence, the comment Will will be a good king is a rare citation

        bonus : i like this comment from ness on DM :
        I have thought this for years, William gets more and more petulant the older he gets, and if I hear him say “I need time to carve my own path” once more I will scream. He clearly doesn’t want the job, he is bone idle (remember that year off he took to do the Agriculture course?) well……that’s come in handy hasn’t it? It was just another excuse for him to do sod all. Yes he is a father, well so are thousands of other young men of his age and none if them expect or demand this ludicrous time off he seems to think he is entitled to

        And another one :
        William doesn’t care and is too lazy to pretend much. Unfortunately his wife is even worse.

      2. This article is so on point.

        “William’s interviews are toe-curling in their awkwardness and rigidity. I don’t say this as a criticism, but as a sad fact.

        You can tell he has zero interest in revealing anything significant about himself or his family for the delectation of the slathering populous.

        He’d far rather just be left alone to do his thing – flying the odd helicopter, making as few official royal engagements as he can get away with, going to lots of society weddings, shooting parties and polo matches, and spending holidays frantically trying to avoid the press as his wife takes the ‘official’ photos.”

        Yup.

        A break from “annoying articles” with some refreshing “epic articles”, I hope KMR will maybe make a post on it, it’s great to see so much of what we keep calling out the Cambridges for is finally stated on an official platform by in the press.

    3. I love this article. I thanked Piers for having the guts to say it in the press. I’m sure William is beet red and Carole is probably becoming very concerned. Wouldn’t it be a hoot if part of the “Middleton Rules” that William and Mike came up with included an agreement between them that William would never sit on the throne so Kate wouldn’t have to deal with that pressure? Carole would never in a million years agree to that, but I think Mike would.

      Anyway, can’t wait to see the fallout (if there is any) from this piece.

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