Royal sources: Prince Harry’s award shows his ‘urgent need for attention’

Friends of the British royal family and military sources have described Prince Harry’s decision to accept a “retail” award at a lavish ceremony as “a clear symbol of his desperate need for attention”, “pathetic” and “sad”.

“I fear this is just a clear symbol of his desperate need for attention,” a royal friend told The Daily Beast. “The irony of the last four years is that Harry and Meghan have said they’re leaving the royal family so the media will leave them alone. Now here’s Harry, literally picking up retail awards live on air. It’s sad.”

The harsh comments came after a source in Harry’s camp said the backlash over Harry being awarded the Pat Tillman Award, led by the mother of the late NFL star turned war hero, had left Harry upset.

Harry’s office declined to comment to The Daily Beast. However, his camp is understood to have been pleased with past winners of the award, such as the U.S. Marine Corps. Jake WoodPraising the award presentation to Harry.

Evidence of how divisive this issue has been is that even the head of ESPN Pat McAfee He criticised the decision to give him the award in the first place, saying the network was trying to “piss people off”.

One source He said Telegraph The controversy surrounding the award was a “bitter pill to swallow,” and “the reaction certainly dampened the luster of the award.”

Harry will receive the Pat Tillman Service Award at the 2024 ESPY Awards, which will air live on Thursday, July 11, at 8 p.m. ET on ABC. He is being honored for his work with the Invictus Games, which he founded to support wounded, injured and sick servicemen and women through international sporting events.

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Tillman was an American football player who left his successful career with the Arizona Cardinals to enlist in the U.S. Army after the September 11 terrorist attacks. He was killed in Afghanistan in 2004, and ESPN created the Pat Tillman Service Award in 2014 in his memory to honor individuals who, like Tillman, Made “notable civic contributions” and demonstrated “extraordinary endurance and spirit of service.”

Since Prince Harry was announced as the winner of this year’s award, whether or not he meets the criteria has been the subject of much debate. Tillman’s mother, Mary, confirmed what she said when she told Prince Harry: Mail on Sunday“I was shocked why they chose such a controversial and divisive person to receive the award. There are other people more suitable to receive the award.”

“If you get a medal in the army, you don’t brag about it, so the idea of ​​appearing at a televised awards ceremony to honour you would be very embarrassing for most military people,” said a military source who worked with Harry in the army. “It’s really sad to see Harry, who was a wonderful man who was respected by everyone, doing this sort of thing.”

Earlier this year, Harry, who completed two tours in Afghanistan as an Apache helicopter pilot, received an award for being a “Living Legend of FlightAt a lavish party in Beverly Hills, California.

“It could have been worse,” the military source said. “If others want to compare him to Buzz Aldrin, that’s their business, but Harry shouldn’t be endorsing that kind of nonsense by showing up to ceremonies in his dinner jacket.”

the Telegraph “Harry’s legacy in Invictus, and the things he has achieved, is his real passion,” a Sussex source told the Daily Telegraph. “That’s where he really feels at home, it’s something he cares deeply about. The reaction has certainly taken the shine off the award.”

On June 29, former NFL player Pat McAfee criticized the decision on his ESPN show, saying, “We should be celebrating sports. Leaders around the world should be celebrating sports, but doing something like this is clearly an attempt to piss people off.” He joked that there should be a new award “for the member of the royal family who doesn’t want to be called ‘the royal family member’ who loves sports?”

However, an anonymous expert described as a “TV consultant working for Disney and ESPN” told Telegraph That executives “behind closed doors” would be “excited” that Harry “has generated such interest tonight”.

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