Prince Harry has claimed his grandfather Prince Philip was “adamant” he didn't want to live to be 100 and had a “great innings” before he died aged 99 in April.
The 36-year-old royal's elderly relative passed away in April, months before he reached the landmark age, and the Duke of Sussex has now spoken out about the family bereavement for the first time.
Harry attended a party for the winners of the Wellchild Awards on Wednesday and met Carmela Chillery-Watson – who won the Inspirational Child 4-6 Years Award for raising more than £50 000 for Muscular Dystrophy UK during lockdown – and her dad Darren.
After Darren passed on his condolences, Harry thanked him and said: “He had a great innings.
He was 99 and he was adamant that he never wanted to live to 100.”
Following Philip's death, Harry – who made a surprise appearance at the Wellchild event having completed a five-day quarantine after flying into the UK from his US home last week – remembered the Duke of Edinburgh as a “legend of banter”.
He said in a statement: “My grandfather was a man of service, honour and great humour.
“He was authentically himself, with a seriously sharp wit, and could hold the attention of any room due to his charm—and also because you never knew what he might say next.
“He will be remembered as the longest reigning consort to the monarch, a decorated serviceman, a Prince and a Duke.
“But to me, like many of you who have lost a loved one or grandparent over the pain of this past year, he was my grandpa: master of the barbecue, legend of banter, and cheeky right ‘til the end.”
Harry joked he would keep his tribute short because he knows that's what his grandfather would have wanted.
He added: “He has been a rock for Her Majesty The Queen with unparalleled devotion, by her side for 73 years of marriage, and while I could go on, I know that right now he would say to all of us, beer in hand, ‘Oh do get on with it!’
“So, on that note, Grandpa, thank you for your service, your dedication to Granny, and for always being yourself.
“You will be sorely missed, but always remembered – by the nation and the world.”