Duke Of Sussex Prince Harry To Receive High Honor At Annual Living Legends of Aviation Awards

Why Meghan Markle Missed Prince Harry's 'Living Legend of Aviation' Award Ceremony

Home / Entertainment / Why Meghan Markle Missed Prince Harry's 'Living Legend of Aviation' Award Ceremony

By Favour Adegoke on January 20, 2024 at 2:00 PM EST

Meghan Markle was notably absent from her husband, Prince Harry's "Living Legend of Aviation" award ceremony in Los Angeles.

Despite her absence, Harry, in high spirits, received the award from John Travolta. During the ceremony, he recalled the iconic dance between the actor and his mother, Princess Diana. Reflecting on his military service and flight training, Harry expressed gratitude for the honor.

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Meghan Markle Missed Prince Harry's 'Living Legend Of Aviation' Award

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The Duchess of Sussex reportedly had to skip the ceremony where her husband was honored as a "living legend of aviation" in Los Angeles on Friday night.

According to a report, Meghan was notably absent as Harry received the award from Hollywood star John Travolta at the Beverly Hills Hilton due to one of their children falling ill.

The royal couple resides in Montecito, California, with their two kids, four-year-old Prince Archie, and two-year-old Princess Lilibet, though it was not specified which child was unwell.

However, the Duke of Sussex appeared to be in high spirits as he joined Prince Mario-Max Schaumburg-Lippe and other attendees at the aviation awards.

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Prince Harry Speaks On John Travolta Dancing With His Mother

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During the event, Harry acknowledged host Travolta's historic dance with Princess Diana at a White House dinner in 1985.

He humorously remarked, "I was just a one-year-old when you danced with my mum at the White House, and now look at us." Accepting the award, he added: "The only thing left to do is... not dance together but fly together."

Harry served for a decade in the military and completed two tours in Afghanistan as a forward air controller and an Apache helicopter pilot, rising to the rank of Captain. He recalled his military service and founding the Invictus Games - a sport for wounded military personnel and veterans.

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When the "Pulp Fiction" star asked what he remembered about his first flight, Harry answered that it was "classified."

Speaking on the moment, Prince Mario-Max Schaumburg-Li described it as "very touching and sweet."

He added, "John Travolta presented the award, and he referred to the dance with his mother Princess Diana, (when) Prince Harry was one year old, so he's like, 'Now I see you again under a new circumstance, on a new stage."

He added, "That was very touching and very sweet because we all remember how gorgeous the dance was of John Travolta and Princess Diana, and now Princess Diana's son is getting an award from John Travolta. It was the cutest, most touching moment."

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Prince Harry Says Flying Has Been A 'Close Encounter With Magic'

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During his acceptance speech at the "Living Legends of Aviation" awards, Harry expressed gratitude for the "incredible honor" and pride "to be recognized among such a dynamic and inspiring group of individuals."

He acknowledged flying as a transcendent experience, saying: "For me, flying has been a transcendent experience. A close encounter with magic, an invitation to both protect freedom… and to feel free, and, funny enough, an opportunity to ground oneself, without actually being grounded."

While reflecting on his three-year flight training, Harry added: "I find my flight training — which was over the course of three years— to be one of life's greatest lessons. It triggered a vast array of feelings."

The Duke now shares this recognition with aviation luminaries like Buzz Aldrin, Jeff Bezos, Tom Cruise, Neil Armstrong, Harrison Ford, Morgan Freeman, and Elon Musk.

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The Duke's 'Living Legend Award' Award Was Branded A 'Pathetic Publicity Stunt'

following the death of Queen Elizabeth II

Unfortunately, not everyone was enthusiastic about Harry receiving the "Living Legend Of Aviation" award.

Former British military figures such as Lord West, ex-head of the Royal Navy, dismissed the title, deeming it "pathetic" and suggesting it diminishes the award's credibility.

"He is not a living legend of aviation. To suggest he is is pathetic. It makes the whole thing seem a bit of a nonsense if they're willing to pick someone like Prince Harry," West said, per Daily Mail.

He added: "He didn't carry off any great exciting feat of amazing flying skill while flying for the Army. They're just trying to get publicity. They know it will cause a stir."

Retired Colonel Richard Kemp acknowledged Harry's bravery and said his time in Afghanistan was "undoubtedly very dangerous." However, he claimed that there were "helicopter pilots who have done much more extraordinary things in Iraq and Afghanistan, risking their lives to rescue their fellow soldiers."

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