Prince William makes secret visit to Afghanistan to honor fallen UK troops
Prince William recently made a secret visit to Afghanistan to honor fallen troops, including his former platoon commander, during a UK Remembrance Day service.
The 28-year-old trained as a Royal Air Forces helicopter rescue pilot and his brother Harry served in Helmand Province, Afghanistan for 10 weeks, beginning in December 2007. Prince William last visited the war-torn country in 2008.
William flew out in a C-17 troop carrier and a Hercules plane and joined UK Defense Secretary Liam Fox and about 2,500 servicemen at a weekend ceremony at Camp Bastion, the UK newspaper The Daily Mail reported, adding that he laid a wreath with a personal note that read: "For Jo, Lex and all those who have made the ultimate sacrifice for our country."
William, the second in line to the British throne, trained alongside Second Lieutenant Joanna "Jo" Dyer, 24, who was killed in Iraq in 2007. William's platoon commander at Sandhurst military academy, Major Alexis "Lex" Roberts, was killed at age 32 in an explosion in Afghanistan in October 2007.
After the memorial ceremony, Prince William left the country and paid a private visit to the Sultan of Oman on his way back to the United Kingdom, The Daily Mail said.
"The national awareness of what young men and women are doing for us in the most extreme and hostile environments imaginable is striking and moving," Prince William wrote in an editorial published in the UK newspaper The Telegraph.
"I find this remarkable and, frankly, humbling - particularly when one considers that, despite the level of sacrifice being made by individuals today, far fewer of us are likely to know someone in uniform than, say, was the case in our grandparents' day," he said.