Prince Harry spent 10 years in the military
Prince Harry is set to receive a very special award for his long-standing service in the military.
It was announced on January 10 that the Duke of Sussex is one of the honorees for the 21st Annual Living Legends of Aviation Awards. The awards will take place next week, on January 19.
His career, which spanned over the course of a decade, has seen him receive many honors, including his Flying Wings.
In addition to his own first-hand work, Harry launched the Invictus Games, an annual charity event for wounded service members and veterans around the world, in 2014.
Here Express.co.uk delves in Harry’s 10-year military career, and why the former royal is receiving the award.
Read more: Prince Harry’s Living Legends award is ‘a bit odd’, says expert
Was Prince Harry a helicopter pilot?
The Duke of Sussex will be recognised for being an Apache helicopter pilot in Afghanistan during his 10 years in the military.
The 39-year-old completed two tours of Afghanistan as a forward air controller and Apache helicopter pilot.
During his career, Harry flew training missions in the UK and US, as well Australia.
A statement on the event’s website read: “Prince Harry is a humanitarian, military veteran, mental wellness advocate and environmentalist. He has dedicated his life to advancing causes that he is passionate about and that bring about permanent change for people and places.”
Harry’s service officially began in 2005
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What are Prince Harry’s military achievements?
Prince Harry served in the Army for 10 years, rising to the rank of Captain.
Through his entire decade of service, the former royal took on two tours of Afghanistan.
He was a Forward Air Controller in 2007 and 2008 and was an Apache Pilot between September 2012 and January 2013.
The former royal has an Afghanistan Service Medal and a Golden, Diamond and Platinum Jubilee medal. He has also worn the KCVO Star, which represents the Royal Victorian Order. This recognises distinguished personal service to the monarch of the Commonwealth.
Due to his active service in the Army, Prince Harry has more medals than Prince William.
Timeline of Prince Harry’s military career
September 2004: Prince Harry passed his Regular Commissions Board (RCB), the qualification necessary to train at Sandhurst.
May 2005: Harry began his training as an Officer Cadet after completing a period of work experience. 2005 also served as the year that his service officially began.
January 2006: Clarence House officially announced that Prince Harry was to join the Blues and Royals.
April 2006: Prince Harry was commissioned as an Army officer.
May 2006: Prince Harry officially joined his regiment.
October 2006: Prince Harry rejoined his regiment in Windsor and was responsible for a troop of 11 soldiers and four Scimitar reconnaissance vehicles.
2007-08: Harry took on his first official tour of Afghanistan.
February 2008: The Ministry of Defence confirmed that Harry had been serving with the British Army in Helmand, Afghanistan for more than two months.
April 2008: Prince Harry was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant with The Household Cavalry (Blues and Royals).
2012-13: Harry’s second tour of Afghanistan.
2014: Harry launched the Invictus Games.
March 2015: The Palace announced that Prince Harry was to leave the Armed Forces in June after 10 years of full-time military service.
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Prince Harry retired from the military in 2015
Does Prince Harry still have military titles?
Although Harry remains a prince, and he and Meghan Markle kept their Duke and Duchess of Sussex titles, they are no longer addressed with their HRH titles.
After stepping down as a senior working royal in 2020, Harry also gave up his military titles and no longer wears army uniform in public.
The military titles were awarded to him by his grandmother, the late Queen Elizabeth II and they were returned to the late monarch in February 2021.
He returned the titles of Captain General Royal Marines, Honorary Air Commandant, RAF Honington and Commodore-in-Chief, Small Ships and Diving, Royal Naval Command because he would no longer be a working royal.
Prince Harry wrote about his military career in his memoir Spare
What did Prince Harry say in Spare about the Army?
Prince Harry was the subject of criticism after he stated in his memoir Spare – which was released in January 2023 – that he killed 25 members of the Taliban.
In Spare, Harry wrote: “They were chess pieces taken off the board, bad guys eliminated before they kill good guys.
“They trained me to ‘other’ them and they trained me well.”
The former royal previously told PEOPLE that he told his military story “in the hopes it would help others”.