Prince Harry’s army pal speaks out after royal loses military titles: ‘Hopefully it’s worth it for him'
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Prince Harry’s army pal spoke out after Buckingham Palace announced the Duke of Sussex won’t be returning as a working member of the British royal family.
The palace said the 36-year-old’s appointment as captain general of the Royal Marines and titles with other military groups would revert to the queen before being distributed to other members of the family.
Harry was stripped of the titles Honorary Air Commandant of RAF Honington and Commodore-in-Chief of Small Ships and Diving for the Royal Navy, Newsweek reported.
The prince, who served in the British army for a decade and has a close bond with the military, founded the Invictus Games competition for wounded troops.
“He was very passionate about what he’s done,” Martyn Compton told ITV’s “Lorraine” on Thursday. “It obviously served his time. So anyone that served time deserves what they’ve got, you know? And to have that taken away – it’s going to be a massive ordeal for him. It’s a big thing that he’s done. And personally, it’s just – hopefully it’s worth it for him.”
Compton is a former British soldier from the Household Cavalry Regiment who suffered injuries after an RPG set his vehicle on fire by a Taliban in Afghanistan, U.K.’s DailyMail reported. He was also shot twice in the leg as he attempted to escape from the burning wreckage. Compton was in the hospital for a year after he suffered burns on 75 percent of his body.
Compton first met Harry in 2006 just before he went to Afghanistan. They have remained friends for 15 years.
“He was just a genuinely nice bloke,” Compton recalled first meeting the duke. “Very caring. He never wanted any special treatment. He was just one of the lads. He’s just a normal guy. He does a lot of military charities… He’s just a caring, normal guy who happens to be royal. And he supported me in various charities and ventures that I’ve done… [This] is a big ordeal for him to be able to do that – but he’s obviously looking out for his family.”
Prince Harry speaks to Martyn Compton, a former British soldier from the Household Cavalry Regiment who suffered his injuries after an RPG set his vehicle alight in Afghanistan, at the Lord Mayor’s Big Curry Lunch in aid of the ABF The Soldiers Charity at The Guildhall on April 7, 2016, in London, England.
(Photo by Alastair Grant – WPA Pool/Getty Images)
When Compton was asked whether he believed Harry would have wanted a different outcome, he responded, “I guess it comes down to you can’t be a royal and cash in on it – and the royal family has said that which is why everything had happened.”
Compton also shared he’ll be tuning in on Harry’s upcoming sit-down with Oprah Winfrey.
“I’ll watch it out of interest of what’s been said, but yeah, it’s going to be a big thing that comes out and there’s obviously a reason why he’s done it by himself,” he said. “He’s a genuinely nice bloke. And I’m sure he’ll do right for his family.”
Harry currently resides in California with his wife Meghan Markle and their firstborn Archie. On Valentine’s Day, a spokesperson for the couple told Fox News they were expecting their second child.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are expecting their second child.
(Photo by Karwai Tang/WireImage/Getty Images)
Last week, Buckingham Palace made the revelation about Harry’s status as a working member of the royal family alongside Markle, 39.
“The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have confirmed to Her Majesty The Queen that they will not be returning as working members of The Royal Family,” the statement read.
“Following conversations with The Duke, The Queen has written confirming that in stepping away from the work of The Royal Family it is not possible to continue with the responsibilities and duties that come with a life of public service,” the statement continued. “While all are saddened by their decision, The Duke and Duchess remain much loved members of the family.”
Meghan Markle and Prince Harry welcomed a son named Archie in 2019.
The decision came one year after Markle and Harry announced their plan to step back as senior members of the royal family. The couple, who recently announced they are expecting their second child together, at the time agreed to a 12-month review of the decision.
It was made after the pair held conversations with members of the royal family.
According to the palace, the military, Commonwealth and charitable associations that will now revert to Harry’s grandmother, Queen Elizabeth II, include the Royal Marines, RAF Honington, Royal Navy Small Ships and Diving, The Queen’s Commonwealth Trust, The Rugby Football Union, The Rugby Football League, The Royal National Theatre and The Association of Commonwealth Universities.
In their January 2020 announcement of stepping back as senior members of the royal family, Markle and Harry discussed their intentions of working independently, splitting their time between the United Kingdom and North America.
Prince Harry patrols through the deserted town of Garmisir on January 2, 2008, in Helmand Province, Afghanistan.
(Photo by John Stillwell – POOL/Anwar Hussein Collection/WireImage/Getty Images)
At the time, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex said their decision came “after many months of reflection and internal discussions.”
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“We have chosen to make a transition this year in starting to carve out a progressive new role within this institution,” the couple shared on Instagram. “We intend to step back as ‘senior’ members of the Royal Family and work to become financially independent, while continuing to fully support Her Majesty The Queen. It is with your encouragement, particularly over the last few years, that we feel prepared to make this adjustment.
“We now plan to balance our time between the United Kingdom and North America, continuing to honor our duty to The Queen, the Commonwealth, and our patronages,” they continued. “This geographic balance will enable us to raise our son with an appreciation for the royal tradition into which he was born, while also providing our family with the space to focus on the next chapter, including the launch of our new charitable entity.”
The couple added they would continue to work with the reigning monarch, 94, as well as Harry’s father Prince Charles and older brother, Prince William.
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle announced in 2019 that they were taking a step back as senior members of the British royal family.
“We look forward to sharing the full details of this exciting next step in due course, as we continue to collaborate with Her Majesty The Queen, The Prince of Wales, The Duke of Cambridge and all relevant parties. Until then, please accept our deepest thanks for your continued support.”
Markle and Harry welcomed a son named Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor in May 2019. The baby’s arrival came a year after the couple tied the knot in a televised royal ceremony in May 2018.
They recently announced that they will speak to Winfrey, 67, in a TV special to be broadcast next month.
A spokesperson for the couple said in a statement that “as evidenced by their work over the past year, The Duke and Duchess of Sussex remain committed to their duty and service to the U.K. and around the world, and have offered their continued support to the organizations they have represented regardless of official role. We can all live a life of service. Service is universal.”
Fox News’ Melissa Roberto and The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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