Prince Harry arrives in Canada to reunite with Meghan, Archie originally appeared on goodmorningamerica.com
Prince Harry left the U.K. Monday and is now in Canada, where he reunited with his wife, Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex, and their 8-month-old son Archie.
Harry, 35, boarded a flight late Monday afternoon, according to ABC News royal contributor Omid Scobie. He was photographed exiting a plane Monday night on Vancouver Island, wearing jeans and carrying his own bag.
The Duke of Sussex, made what could be one of his last official engagements as a senior member of the royal family Monday when he met with world leaders at the U.K.-Africa Investment Summit hosted by the U.K. government. Harry and Meghan visited Africa last year in what appears to be, at least for the foreseeable future, their last official royal tour of a foreign country.
Harry's brother and sister-in-law, Prince William and Kate, hosted an evening reception at Buckingham Palace for the summit, which Harry did not attend.
Instead, the sixth in line to the British throne returned to Vancouver Island, where he, Meghan and Archie stayed over the holidays. Meghan returned to the U.K. with Harry after the holidays and then flew back to Canada around the time the couple announced they planned to "step back" as senior members of the royal family.
Harry remained in the U.K. to negotiate his family's future, including attending a high-stakes summit with Queen Elizabeth, Prince Charles and Prince William at Sandringham, the queen's Norfolk estate.
After more than a week of negotiations, Buckingham Palace announced on Saturday that beginning this spring, Harry and Meghan will no longer use their HRH titles and will be known only as Harry, the Duke of Sussex, and Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex. The couple and Archie plan to spend the majority of their time living in North America, though they will keep their Frogmore Cottage home in the U.K., for which they will pay rent and all operating costs.
Harry and Meghan will no longer rely on public funds for their royal duties and will no longer travel overseas on behalf of Her Majesty. They are still members of the royal family and will attend family events like Trooping the Colour when invited by the queen, according to a palace source.
Prince Harry is losing his military titles and patronages including Captain General Royal Marines, Honorary Air Commandant Royal Air Force Honington and Small Ships and Diving, Royal Naval Command: Commodore in Chief. It's a significant loss for a royal who served in Afghanistan during his time in the British Army.
Harry made his first public comments about his and Meghan's decision to no longer be "working members" of Britain's royal family at an event Sunday night to benefit his charity Sentebale.
"The decision that I have made for my wife and I to step back, is not one I made lightly," he said. "It was so many months of talks after so many years of challenges. And I know I haven't always gotten it right, but as far as this goes, there really was no other option."
Royal watchers noticed Harry's use of "I" in that line of his speech as much of the blame around Harry and Meghan's new future has been placed on Meghan, who gave up her life in Los Angeles and Toronto and her acting career when she married Prince Harry in 2018.
"I have grown up feeling support from so many of you, and I watched as you welcomed Meghan with open arms as you saw me find the love and happiness that I had hoped for all my life," Harry said. "Finally, the second sonof Diana got hitched, hurray!"
"I also know you've come to know me well enough over all these years to trust that the woman I chose as my wife upholds the same values as I do. And she does, and she's the same woman I fell in love with," he added. "We both do everything we can to fly the flag and carry out our roles for this country with pride."
"Once Meghan and I were married, we were excited, we were hopeful, and we were here to serve," Harry said. "For those reasons, it brings me great sadness that it has come to this."
Harry and Meghan initially proposed that they would simply "step back" as senior members of the royal family and work to become "financially independent," but after high-stakes negotiations with Harry's family and palace officials, Meghan and Harry's exit from royal life became more stark.
"What I want to make clear is we're not walking away, and we certainly aren't walking away from you," Harry said Sunday. "Our hope was to continue serving the queen, the commonwealth and my military associations, butwithout public funding. Unfortunately, that wasn't possible."
"I've accepted this, knowing that it doesn't change who I am or how committed I am," he said. "But I hope that helps you understand what it had to come to, that I would step my family back from all I have ever known, to take a step forward into what I hope can be a more peaceful life."
"You've looked out for me for so long, but the media is a powerful force, and my hope is one day our collective support for each other can be more powerful because this is so much bigger than just us," Harry said. "It has been our privilege to serve you, and we will continue to lead a life of service."
"We are taking a leap of faith. Thank you for giving me the courage to take this next step," he said.
In a moment of levity in his speech, Harry also thanked supporters for the excitement they've shown for Archie, whom he said recently saw snow for the first time and "thought it was bloody brilliant."