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Prince Harry in Colo for wounded vet Warrior Games


May 11. 2013 12:37PM
Associated Press



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(AP) Britain's Prince Harry, a veteran combat helicopter pilot, met Saturday with wounded service members competing in the Paralympic-style Warrior Games in Colorado.


The prince, wearing brown camouflage and boots, met with athletes on the United Kingdom team. He also plans to attend a volleyball match and the opening ceremonies at the Olympic training center in Colorado Springs.


The visit got underway Friday night when Harry charmed dozens of dignitaries, British expatriates, students and military officers at a cocktail party welcoming him to Colorado. He also joined the crowd in singing "Happy Birthday" to U.S. Olympic swimmer Missy Franklin, who was celebrating turning 18 at a golf club south of Denver.


A captain in Britain's Army Air Corps, Harry has deployed to Afghanistan twice. He's attending the Colorado games because he believes the wounded deserve recognition, according to a statement from St. James' Palace in London, the official residence of the royal family.


"He has said before how humbled he feels by the extraordinary courage and fortitude shown by those servicemen and women who have made huge sacrifices for their country, and to whom we all owe a considerable debt of gratitude," the statement said.


Harry returned to Britain in January after a 20-week deployment to Afghanistan as a co-pilot and gunner on an Apache helicopter.


He acknowledged to reporters he had targeted Taliban fighters, and when asked if he had killed anyone, said, "Yeah, so, lots of people have."


His first deployment to Afghanistan, as a forward air controller in 2007-2008, was cut short after 10 weeks when details of his whereabouts were disclosed in the media.


He caused a scandal on his last trip to the U.S. when he was photographed frolicking nude with an unidentified woman in a Las Vegas hotel suite in August.


"It was probably a classic example of me probably being too much army, and not enough prince," he said afterward.


The Warrior Games run through Thursday. They also include basketball, shooting, archery, swimming and track and field. About 260 athletes are expected.


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Follow Dan Elliott at http://twitter.com/DanElliottAP


Associated Press


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