Prince Harry has shared a video message to offer his support to military veterans taking part in a gruelling challenge for the armed forces charity Walking With The Wounded.
The Duke of Sussex, 35, who is currently living in his $14 million Santa Barbara mansion, shared a message of support with soldiers at the official launch of The Walk of Oman, which will see a team of ex-service personnel trek 400km across the country, including part of the world’s largest sand desert.
Trekking around 20km to 22km per day, the team will endure temperatures as high as 95°F as they pull their custom-built cart, weighing in excess of 300kg, across the unforgiving Omani desert.
The Duke, who referred to his ‘Walking With The Wounded family’ during the video clip, congratulated teams taking part, adding: ‘You represent the whole veteran community and I have no doubt that thorough this opportunity you will demonstrate the resilience, courage and talent that exists within those who have served.’
Prince Harry, 35, shared a video message to offer his support to military veterans taking part in a gruelling challenge for the armed forces charity Walking With The Wounded
In the video message, which was broadcast live on the Walking With The Wounded’s Facebook page, the royal said: ‘We are all delighted that the Walk In Oman continues to go ahead, despite the challenging environment we are all faced with at the moment.
‘This in itself is an administration of the remarkable long standing friendship our country has with Oman and it shows the determination of those that were selected for the walk.’
The Duke went on to say he wanted to especially congratulate the UK team members and ‘wish them well as they prepare for the epic journey they will be embarking on.’
He finished: ‘Good luck preparing for the desert, stay safe and I’ll see you soon.’
Harry, who has been involved with the charity for several years, referred to it as ‘my Walking With The Wounded family’ (pictured joined military veterans for a 1,000-mile walk of Britain in 2015 (above))
Earlier this summer, Prince Harry lent his support to the soldiers participating in the form of a video message filmed at Tyler Perry’s home in Los Angeles.
During the earlier clip, he said: ‘At the end of this year, a year that has seen unprecedented global challenges, a group of veterans will be tackling a challenge unlike anything they’ve faced before.
‘Facing searing temperatures and pulling a cart that weighs more than three times their own bodyweight, these veterans will need to summon incredible physical and mental strength.
‘I am proud to once again support them and support the veterans whose courage, determination and resilience is a credit to all of us who have served. To the men and women selected for this team, good luck! I know people all over the world will be cheering you on.’
The Duke had earlier shared his support with the team as he launched The Walk of Oman for Walking with the Wounded in June
The Duke has previously supported the charity by going on an expedition to the North Pole in 2011 and trekking across the South Pole with 12 injured servicemen in 2013.
He also joined wounded veterans for a 1,000-mile walk of Britain in 2015.
In partnership with the Omani Armed Forces and with support from the Royal Office of HM Sultan Haitham bin Tariq, the ambitious trek pays homage to the legendary travels Wilfred Thesiger took across the Arabian Peninsula in the 1940s.
Starting on November 20 this year and ending December 11, the walk will also take the team across part of the Empty Quarter— the world’s largest sand desert, before bringing the arduous trek to a close on Oman’s Armed Forces Day.
Dominic Reid OBE, CEO of The Invictus Games Foundation, commented: ‘The Invictus Games Foundation is proud to lend its support to Walking with the Wounded and the Walk of Oman.
Prince Harry’s association with the charity goes back several years (pictured, with six former military soldiers as they undertake The Walk of Britain covering over 1000 miles from John O’Groats to Buckingham Palace in 2015)
‘This walk not only shares a patron with the foundation, it shares its goals in supporting those injured in service. We look forward to helping establish further international endeavours in the future.’
The team of ex-service personnel, all of whom have physical or cognitive injuries, will endure hunger, thirst and extreme temperatures to highlight the extraordinary courage and determination of the men and women who have been wounded while serving their countries and to draw attention to the support needed in their transition to civilian life.
Due to the hostile conditions and the nature of the injuries involved, the expedition teams will be followed by a support team, who will be on hand in case of emergencies.
To mark the charity’s tenth birthday earlier this year, Prince Harry shared a series of photographs of him supporting them on the now defunct SussexRoyal Instagram.
To mark the charity’s tenth birthday earlier this year, Prince Harry shared a series of photographs of him supporting them on the now defunct SussexRoyal Instagram
After training at Sandhurst, Harry was commissioned as an officer in the Household Cavalry’s Blues and Royals in April 2006.
During his ten years in the Army, he undertook two operational tours of Afghanistan and qualified as an Apache helicopter commander.
His second tour of Helmand, in 2012, is believed to be one of the few times in his life that the Prince truly found contentment away from the restrictions and pressures of Royal life.
Known as ‘Captain Wales’ by his comrades, he proudly told one fellow soldier: ‘I’ve got the best of both worlds. I get to do all this. I can fly helicopters. I can shine a spotlight on the work I want to do.’
It was the Army which offered Harry his first taste of life away from being a royal.
After training at Sandhurst, Harry was commissioned as an officer in the Household Cavalry’s Blues and Royals in April 2006. Pictured: Harry visits West Point Military Academy in New York in June 2010 (left) and with his regiment The Blue and Royals at a Remembrance Sunday parade in Windsor in November 2007 (right)
Harry’s military career ended in June 2015 but he has remained a passionate supporter of the Armed Forces and was handed a number of ceremonial military titles.
He said at the time: ‘Luckily for me, I will continue to wear the uniform and mix with fellow servicemen and women for the rest of my life, helping where I can.’
His highest profile military title is as Captain General of the Royal Marines, a role he was handed by the Queen in December 2017, succeeding the Duke of Edinburgh.
As the ceremonial head of the elite unit, Harry is entitled to wear the uniform and insignia equivalent to a Field Marshal.
His two-year association compares with the 64-year term of his grandfather.
Earlier this year Harry was stripped of his military titles and patronages when he and former actress Meghan stepped down as a senior members of the Royal Family.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex recently signed a megadeal with Netflix which industry insiders believe could be worth $150 million.