Prince Harry to leave the British Army
Prince Harry has announced he is leaving the army after 10 years of service.
The British royal – Queen Elizabeth’s grandson and currently fourth-in-line to the throne – will cease being a military man in June after completing a four-week assignment with the Australian Defence Force.
In a statement released today (17.03.15), Harry said: “After a decade of service, moving on from the army has been a really tough decision. I consider myself incredibly lucky to have had the chance to do some very challenging jobs and have met many fantastic people in the process.
“From learning the hard way to stay onside with my Colour Sergeant at Sandhurst, to the incredible people I served with during two tours in Afghanistan – the experiences I have had over the last 10 years will stay with me for the rest of my life. For that I will always be hugely grateful.
“Inevitably most good things come to an end and I am at a crossroads in my military career. Luckily for me, I will continue to wear the uniform and mix with fellow servicemen and women for the rest of my life.”
After completing his officer training at Sandhurst military college, the prince – known as Captain Harry Wales in the army – undertook his first tour of Afghanistan in late 2007 before qualifying as an Apache attack helicopter pilot. Harry then completed a second tour of Afghanistan as a helicopter pilot between September 2012 and January 2013.
He then stepped away from front line service to take on an office job last year.
Once he has left the army, Harry is expected to take on more charity work and royal duties and is also believed to be considering utilising his helicopter pilot skills for one of the emergency services just like his brother Prince William, 32.
William – who is second-in-line to the throne after his father Prince Charles – served as an officer in the army and as an RAF search and rescue helicopter pilot and he will begin work as an air ambulance pilot with East Anglia Air Service in the summer.
Harry will also continue his work with injured military service personnel and will be heavily involved with the Invictus Games, the sporting event he created last year for wounded servicemen and women. It is expected to take place again in 2016.
Speaking about his future, Harry said: “I am considering the options for the future and I am really excited about the possibilities … so while I am finishing one part of my life, I am getting straight into a new chapter. I am really looking forward to it.”